The quest, as defined by Thomas Foster in "How to Read Literature Like a Professor" has five criteria, and this essay assignment (which includes a rubric) allows students to analyze novels or short stories by describing the quest of the protagonist. It is surprising how many books and stories fit the criteria of a quest! This can be assigned as a culminating activity for a class novel or for individual reading. I have also used it as material for a class debate about whether or not a piece indeed IS a quest. I have assigned the essay with "The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-time", "A Tale of Two Cities", "The Great Gatsby", "My Sister's Keeper", and "The Catcher in the Rye", just to name a few. The possibilities are truly endless.