Kicking Ass and Saving Souls

Kicking Ass and Saving Souls

Story of Boy fm Baltimore Who Evolves fm Safecracking, Jewel-Heisting, Deep-Sea Diving, Ultimate-Fighting, International Playboy to a Globetrotting Humanitarian

Written by:

Additional Formats
  • Paperback
  • ISBN 9780143121329
  • 272 Pages
  • Penguin Books
  • Adult


The gripping and redemptive story of how an American boy went looking for adventure and wound up trying to save the world

Stefan Templeton is a true Renaissance man with an insatiable thirst for risk. Before he was twenty-one, Templeton had hunted in Burgundy, brawled in Oxford, served as a medicine man on Colombia, escaped death in the Amazon, and trained to be a deep-sea diver on Cousteau’s Calypso. In this biography that reads like a thrilling adventure novel, readers accompany Templeton through the United States, Europe, South America, Japan, and Southeast Asia—chronicling the amazing life of a playboy, jewel thief, warrior, and finally a hero who finds a focus in humanitarian relief work in some of the bleakest corners of the globe.


“Stefan Templeton has led the kind of life that’s too wild, too lucky, and simply too unbelievable to be true, but it is…But while his adventures are the heart of the book, it’s the end that keeps you reading, as Stefan struggles to find peace and finally constancy in his life. Matthews…recounts all of this with panache and superb pacing to deliver a story so fantastic, it may as well be a novel.” — The Daily Beast

“The most compelling quality of Kicking Ass and Saving Souls isn’t just that Templeton has been in extreme situations all over the world—it’s that when he puts his mind to it, virtually nothing is impossible.” — USA Character Approved Blog

“Matthews creatively portrays Templeton’s wanderlust personality…the ebb and flow of Templeton’s life on the go in Kicking Ass and Saving Souls makes for a compelling, page-turning experience.” —

“Matthews’ narrative reads like ‘the stuff of fiction, the stock-in-trade of thrillers and James Bond movies’; it’s also an exhilarating narrative about redemption and the power of personal choice. Eat your heart out, James Bond.” — Kirkus

“David Matthews’s vision of the incredible life of his childhood friend is piercingly unadorned. Filled with humor, vivaciousness, calamity, and ever-present compassion, it’s an unbelievable story—equal parts Bruce Lee, Wilt Chamberlain, Pancho Villa, Robin Hood, and Jason Bourne. Matthews’s wonderful new book is a rarity. There’s a beating heart inside this page-turner.” — Alex Lemon, author of Happy: A Memoir

Kicking Ass and Saving Souls is an action-packed, edge-of-your-seat adventure. What gives the book soul is that beneath the fierce tiger is a man who wants to make a positive impact and redeem himself. After a hair-raising international roller coaster ride that’s a ton of fun, Stefan finally grasps his true calling, channeling his innate thirst for danger and its rush of adrenaline into saving lives.” — Norman Ollestad, author of Crazy for the Storm: A Memoir of Survival