Dirk Straun is the hero of this story. What does it mean to be a hero? How does Dirk fit the definition of a hero? What are some of his heroic acts?
How does the setting, both physical and historical, affect the plot of Tai-Pan? What is the importance of picking this specific time in history to set the novel in? Could the story have worked in a different historical setting? Why or why not?
At the beginning of the novel, what is the financial situation of The Noble House? How did the company get into this situation? What is the deal between Jin-qua and Dirk and why is it necessary in saving The Noble House?
Dirk takes many calculated risks throughout the course of the novel. What are the risks he takes? Are his risks wise or foolish? In other words, does Dirk succeed through...
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