The Alchemist : Reading Comprehension

Part One

Pages 1-50

What is the boy’s name?

What does he constantly carry with him?

Where is he going now?

What is his job?

What did he do before he did this job?

Who is he thinking about?

Who does he meet first that tells him about his dream?

Who does he meet second that encourages him to pursue his dream?

What does he agree to pay to the first person?

What does he pay to the second person?

What does the second person give him in exchange for his payment?

How should he use the things he’s been given?

Part Two

Pages 51-80

What city does the boy go to?

Who is the first “friendly” person he meets?

What does the “friendly” person do to him?

Why was he distracted?

Where does the boy want to go? Why?

Who is the next person he meets?

How does he get a new job? What is his new job?

How long does he work there and what changes while he’s there?

What is the old man’s Personal Legend? Will he ever do it? Why?

What causes the boy to leave?

Who does he meet next?

What does the man he met want to do, learn, or become?

What does the man he met constantly do in the caravan?

Pages 81-120

What is happening in the desert that causes worry?

What do the guides watch for in the desert to help guide them?

Where are they trying to go in the desert?

After they arrive, what is the first rule of the place?

What does the man he met want to do first?

Who does he ask to help them?

Who is the girl he meets?

What’s the first thing he says to her?

What’s the (almost) first thing she says to him?

Who is the alchemist and what does he look like? (Describe)

Does he match their expectations?

How does the boy first meet the alchemist?

How does the alchemist first start training him?

How does the boy learn about trouble that’s coming? What is the trouble?

What is the result of the trouble? (What was the threat?)

Pages 121-171 (end)

What does the boy say to the girl before he leaves?

What does she say in response?

What life do they find in the desert?

How do they escape the two men in black who confront them?

What color do the tribesmen wear who finally capture them?

What does the alchemist offer that lets them live for 3 more days?

What does the alchemist offer that would set them free?

What happens on the first day?

What happens on the second day?

What happens on the third day?

Describe the conversation between the boy, the desert, the wind, and the sun.

After the storm, where is the boy standing and who is smiling?

Where does the alchemist leave the boy?

What does the alchemist give him before he leaves? Why? Is there more?

How does the boy know where to start looking?

Who does he meet as he’s looking?

What do they do to him?

What does the one man say to him just before he leaves?

What does the boy do next? Where does he go?


How and where does he eventually gather his treasure?

Where will he go next and what will he do?



  • Melchizedek
  • Umim and Thumim
  • Personal Legend
  • Soul of the World
  • The Universal Language
  • Elixir of Life
  • Philosopher’s Stone
  • Alchemist


  1. After reading this story, what do you think about destiny? Is destiny assigned to you? Do you create your own? Explain.
  2. What is your Personal Legend?
  3. Was there ever a time when something in your life seemed to derail you or slow you down in the pursuit of your Personal Legend?
  4. If you were the boy and encountered the difficulties he encountered along the way, would you do anything differently? What? Why?
  5. Imagine you are “an alchemist.” How would you live your life? What would you do?

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