Friday, August 8, 2008

Three Cups of Tea

Three Cups of Tea: One Man's Mission to Promote Peace . . . One School at a Time Three Cups of Tea: One Man's Mission to Promote Peace . . . One School at a Time by Greg Mortenson

rating: 3 of 5 stars

This is the true story of Greg Mortensen's quest to build and staff schools for children, especially girls, in Pakistan and Afghanistan. As a mountain climber, he was taken in by a small village in a time of need. He promised them a school, and despite being broke himself, returned to make good on that promise. In the process, he realized that virtually no funds are reaching remote mountain villages for education. Through a lot of pluck and determination, today Mortensen runs the Central Asia Institute which has built 63 schools since 1996.

The first 100 pages were good. They really set the stage on Mortensen's personal life and make you realize how far he has come to be the man he is today. The second 100 pages slowed me W A Y down. That section portrays a lot of the technicalities of getting the job done--negotiating with the local tribes, raising funds, etc. The last 100 pages were probably the best. They cover his time in the region since 9/11 and effectively argue that secular schools in this terrorist-infested region will promote peace in ways that that bombs or missiles never can.

The book doesn't read as smoothly as I would have liked. Nor did I really feel that I totally understood Mortensen. His style of personal management and priorities just didn't jive with me. However, I have tremendous respect for him and his sacrificing family who are trying to make the world a better place, one person at a time.

They also reviewed it: bethany, Trixie, Just a (Reading) Fool
(let me know if you did also so I can add you)


Trixie said...

Hey Tricia, Glad you got through the book! I hadn't gone to the CAI website, but checked it out with your link. Very interesting to see his speaking schedule and that he is currently in Pakistan and Afghanistan. That's the part I find SO remarkable - his work is really ongoing.

Rae said...

I will be reading this book for my town's library book club later this year. It's a book I have wanted to read for quite some time. You always right such great reviews..thanks for sharing!