Sorry, but I was disappointed with the narration of this second book by Mortenson. Because it is written in first-person, I think I would have felt closer to the material if a male narrator had been used. Worth listening to, but not as engaging as the first one: Three Cups of Tea.
3 Cups of Tea and Stones into Schools are different. I really enjoyed reading 3 Cups and also liked listening to Stones. 3 Cups is about Mortenson while Stones is about the organization he built. Don't get me wrong, there are great uplifting stories in Stones but he is narrating rather than experiencing the triumphs. Definitely worth the time and money but like most follow-ups, a bit different from the original. It is obvious why the books are "required reading" for military going overseas.
It is hard to give this book too much praise. It combines adventure, colorful characters, and behind-the-headlines descriptions of life in rural Afghanistan and Pakistan, areas that have loomed large on the world stage since 9/11. The common thread through all is the amazing saga of Greg Mortenson: his organization has now built over 100 schools in these rural areas and he has built lasting and deep personal friendships with people from all walks of life and cultures as he pursues his mission to bring educational opportunities to the neglected villages of Afghanistan and Pakistan. The writing style seems more polished than his first book and includes informative background on the political and cultural background of the region.
I read this book right after "The Good Soldiers." It provides in certain sections a helpful counterpoint to the dark description of US Military operations in the earlier book. In Mortenson's experience, the US Military now clearly gets the importance of building relationships of trust and goodwill with the local communities. In fact, they even have a term for it--"COIN." If you are not familiar with the lessons the US Military has learned from Greg Mortenson, that is another reason to read this book.
I find listening to a female narrator read this book distracting. I am by no means a misogynist, but the words are odd coming from a woman. Putting that aside, the information in this book is so vital. I recommend it to anyone.
I enjoyed reading 3 cups from Kindle, and bought this audio book instantly without a review there at that time - big mistake! - that sweet and lazy female voice representing a male former mountaineer just drove me crazy! 2 hours struggling and I still could not get into this book, so I have to stop listening to stop the torture.
Change the reader please, and refund me that precious credit! At least I can use the refund to buy a Kindle book instead! So unbelievably unprofessional!
Having this read by a woman is a total turn off. I loved his first book and think he is a great man doing a job no one else would consider taking on but I am not ejoying listening to this book.
I just completed the 1st half of this audio book and NOT one school has been built AND it is read (in the first person) by a WOMAN... WHAT THE HELL? They couldn't find a man to read this book. I mean COME on!!!! ridiculous!!! Hopefully at least 1 school is built in the 2nd half. VERY DISAPPOINTING.. sadly played off the popularity of 3 Cups of Tea... shame on you G.M.