by Greg Mortenson and David Oliver Relin
During a failed attempt to climb K2, mountain bum Greg Mortenson found himself stumbling into uncharted territory, a small Pakistani village not on any map. The people there treated him with great kindness, though they were very poor even by local standards. That's when Mortenson made a promise that would change his life: he told his new friends he would build them a school for their children.
Back home in California, living out of his car while working as a temporary EMT, Mortenson started to wonder what on earth he had been thinking, making such a promise, when he himself was barely scraping by. He knew nothing about fundraising, construction, or any of the skills he would need to build a school on the other side of the world. "Three Cups of Tea" tells how he eventually fulfills his promise, and goes on to build dozens of schools, most of them for girls, where they're needed most. And, without meaning to, he helps to fight terrorism at its very source. An incredible story, all the better because it's true.