Study Guide

A Hologram for the King Genre

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Alan is no Don Quixote or Roland or Galahad— he's not even Bilbo Baggins—but he's definitely on a journey to seek his fortune and reclaim his place in the world.

And as far as we're concerned, that sounds like a "difficult journey toward a goal, often complicated by obstacles" or, you know, a quest.

Like all heroes in quest literature, Alan finds himself in a doomed situation. He's a stranger in his own life and he's got to undertake a risky journey if he's going to win the day. While the stakes aren't legendary or even nationally important, they're critical for Alan.

If you're still not convinced, consider this: his trip to Jeddah places him in a culture that he doesn't understand and pits him against impossible odds for a precious prize.

That sounds pretty quest-y to us.

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