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It's time for the second TV Tropes Halloween Avatar Contest, theme: cute monsters! Details and voting here.

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Better Than It Sounds: Literature K To Z
aka: Literature K-Z
These books really aren't so bad, once you start reading them. Highlight the title, after you guess.

Please sort new titles alphabetically to avoid double-entries.
  • Kafka on the Shore: A boy runs away from home and an old man talks to cats.
  • Keys to the Kingdom Asthmatic 12 year old almost dies and is randomly selected to be the Lord of the Universe by part of a sentient legal document.
  • Kidnapped: Two guys run around Scotland for three months while arguing over politics so that one of them can sue his uncle at the end.
  • The King in Yellow story "The Repairer of Reputations": A playscript causes civilization-crippling madness, suicide is legalized, and a millennium-spanning conspiracy is foiled by a murderous cat.
  • The King Killer Chronicles: A red headed gypsy wizard becomes a famous hero/villain, and then tells his story to a biographer.
  • Kushiel's Legacy A woman's fetish makes a national heroine.
    • A French prostitute wins politics.
  • King Rat: An Englishman's buddy manipulates his friends to make money in Singapore. Very Loosely Based on a True Story.
  • The Kingdom Keepers: Disney Theme Parks: the book series!
  • Kitty: Two dogs travel across Spain.
  • Lady: My Life as a Bitch: A girl gets turned into a dog by a magical tramp. She then proceeds to be confused about whether being a dog or human is better, and has sex with another guy who was also turned into a dog.
  • Lamb: The Gospel According To Biff, Christ's Childhood Pal: A Jewish teen and his wisecracking friend go on a road trip through Asia so the first teen can find his purpose in life.
  • The Last Unicorn: A reclusive, unloving hermit is forced to go on a quest to rescue the rest of her kind after a jive-talking butterfly hints that they've been taken prisoner by a lightly carbonated energy drink. Over the course of her adventures, she learns how to love, but eventually gets better.
  • The Lathe of Heaven: Reality keeps changing because a psychiatrist is pushy.
  • Le Ton beau de Marot: An obscure French poem is translated at least a dozen times while an intellectual discusses Woolseyisms.
  • Learning The World: A blogger on a space ark documents humanity's first encounter with the Alien Space Bats.
  • The Legend of Sleepy Hollow: Social-climbing schoolteacher attempts to seduce the wealthy town flirt, only to be run out of town by a phony(?) dullahan.
  • Lemonade Mouth: YA novel about a teenage band, printed in multiple fonts and made into a Disney Channel Original Movie.
  • Les Misérables: Convict escapes justice. Valiant capture attempt by devoted police force prove futile. Student uprising ends in massacre. And then there's a wedding. And it goes for about 1700 pages in the unabridged version.
  • Leviathan: An Austro-Hungarian prince-in-name-only teams up with a Scottish Sweet Polly Oliver to fight German steam-powered robots with a flying whale. Oh, did I mention it's 1914?
  • Leviathan's Wake: A space opera that is such hard sci-fi that there are monthlong breaks in the action while the heroes travel from airless rock to airless rock. Except it's also film noir.
  • Life of Pi: Boy spends several chapters talking about how zoo animals are better off than those in the wild and his practicing three religions. Then he gets lost at sea sharing a boat with a Bengal tiger that is possibly his imaginary friend.
  • A Little Love Song: A seventeen-year-old girl judges people for having premarital sex, is tricked into sleeping with a Jerk Ass then falls in love with his cousin and sleeps with him too, reads a dead woman's diary, works in a bookshop, and delivers a baby. Also, it's World War II.
  • The Little Prince: A pilot crashes in the desert. Near dying from thirst, he meets an extraterrestrial. They talk philosophy.
  • Little Women: Four sisters with very different personalities grow up next door to a boy who plays the piano. One of them dies.
    • Little Men: One of the sisters runs a school for kids who can't be trusted in the real world. Hilarity Ensues.
    • Jo's Boys: The kids are all grown up and still wreaking havoc. One girl becomes a doctor, another falls in love with a penniless violinist, and the adopted son of the woman running the school wants to marry his cousin.
  • Lolita: Man marries woman because he lusts after her prepubescent daughter; after said woman is conveniently written out of the picture, he starts a sexual relationship with his stepdaughter.
  • Lone Wolf: The main character gets eaten by wolves, killed in battle, enslaved, frozen to death, eats a poisoned meal someone anonymously sent to his room, is murdered in his sleep, incinerated, asphyxiated, stabbed to death, ventilated, made into a pin-cushion, falls to his doom, drowns, gets strangled, hacked to pieces, crushed by a falling mast, executed as an enemy of the state, gets eaten (a lot), blows himself up (at least twice, in one case taking half a city with him), gets his throat slit by muggers, crushed by falling granite, tortured to death, killed by radiation (and his corpse put on display by his arch-nemesis du jour, which eventually leads to the nemesis' death by same), saves the world, opens someone's safety deposit box and gets stabbed by a poison needle booby-trap, is drugged and used as a subject for an experimental taxidermy procedure, passes out and falls into a pit of lava, is killed by a mob with pitchforks after trying to hide in a bale of hay, gives away his position to thousands of hostiles, succumbs to bio-terrorism, and startles a small man with a gun. And it's all your fault. Death is not cheap, and this character is not Nigh Invulnerable. Despite all this, he's still a total Badass. This story cannot be fully comprehended on the first reading.
  • Lonely Werewolf Girl: A drug-addled runaway princess, her businesswoman sister, their rock-musician twin cousins, a level-headed white-haired girl, a fashion obsessed queen, a Perky Goth and an heavy-metal fan are pursued by mercenaries hired by the princess's older brother. Did I mention that all but the last three are werewolves?
  • The Long Earth: Novel use of a potato sparks a mass exodus.
  • The Longest Day: Big Damn Heroes invade territory held by a textbook Evil Overlord. Based on a True Story.
  • Look To Windward: Two veterans seek resolution.
    • An army veteran gradually remembers what he came here for, while elsewhere a group of people entertain themselves and a scientist's work is interrupted.
  • Lord Jim: A captain mentally berates himself for 200+ pages because he thinks he got his crew killed. He later finds out that the entire crew is STILL ALIVE but still feels crummy for having done something that MIGHT have resulted in their deaths and lets himself be killed by an enemy.
  • Lord Loss: Boy's family is killed by one baby and one reptile. The Big Bad can only be defeated by chess.
  • Lord of the Flies: Children learn about boar hunting and killing each other brutally.
  • The Lord of the Rings: Four short people with hairy feet, one short man with a hairy beard, a wizard, a magical archer, a king, and the preferred and less nerdy of two brothers go out to destroy an Artifact of Attraction.
  • Lord Peter Wimsey: Geeky, self-absorbed aristocrat fights crime for fun while trying to make an over-the-hill Extraordinarily Empowered Girl fall in love with him.
  • Lost In the Funhouse: A man falls into despair over the proper use of italics.
  • The Lust Lizard Of Melancholy Cove: A small-town psychiatrist decides to take all of her patients off of their anti-depressants. Telepathic marine reptile rampages ensue.
  • Macdonald Hall: A G rated version of Animal House.
  • The Madman: God dies. No one cares.
  • A Madness of Angels: A homeless guy with a split personality tries to kill his mentor.
    • The Midnight Mayor: The homeless guy answers the phone and returns a girl's hat.
    • The Neon Court: The homeless guy talks to fairies and gets freaked out by the fact that it's nighttime.
    • The Minority Council: The homeless guy gets introduced to drugs.
  • Magic Kingdom for Sale - SOLD!: Chicago man buys a kingdom, proves to the local landowners that he's worthy of the purchase, with the help of a girl that needs lots of water, a bumbling wizard, and a pair of kleptomaniacs.
    • The Black Unicorn: Man walks right into his worst enemy's trap. The girl that needs lots of water saves the day.
    • Wizard At Large: A dog goes missing. The kleptomaniacs almost destroy the world by giving in to temptation.
    • The Tangle Box: Man, witch, and dragon are trapped in a box by a clueless con man with a talking bird. An evil fairy distracts everyone with pretty gemstones while he plans to Take Over the World. The girl that needs lots of water wanders around looking for soil so she can have a baby.
    • Witches' Brew: The heir to the throne is kidnapped by the witch, whose dastardly revenge plan involves making her love her. Magical monsters attack the king and the girl who needs lots of water, sent by a king no one has ever heard of. Meanwhile, the dog and the inept wizard disappear and no one cares.
    • A Princess of Landover: A Bratty Half-Pint learns a valuable lesson about family and obedience by running away from home. In the process she tries in vain to get rid of the kleptomaniacs who follow her everywhere, evades an ugly abusive suitor, and saves a library from being raped by demons.
  • The Magic Thief: A boy robs a wizard, and in return is taken on as the wizard's apprentice. Boy then saves the city's magic(al being) by breaking and entering his Uncle's house, and destroying said uncle's property.
    • The Magic Thief: Lost: Boy blows up his master's house, and is exiled from the city. He then goes and destroys a stone belonging to the leader of a city. The leader then (inadvertently) commits suicide.
    • The Magic Thief: Found: Boy goes on a long journey to find a stone, and finds out that cities magic(al beings) are made from dragons. Upon his return home, he forces two of the magical beings to become friends.
  • Magyk: Two wizards, princess, and army deserter are continually pursued by bounty hunter and tophat-wearing necromancer.
  • Main Street: A woman moves to a small town with her husband and realizes how much she hates small towns.
  • The Makioka Sisters: Four sisters from Osaka ignore World War II almost entirely. This is presented as heroic. It works. Seinfeldian Conversation ensues.
  • Malazan Book of the Fallen: In a world with zombie cavemen and dinosaurs with swords everyone is happy when a handicapped guy suffers even more. Those who survive, that is.
  • The Maltese Falcon: Lots of people chase after a worthless statue.
  • The Man Who Was Thursday Man bravely and articulately risks his life in order to upset an evil scheme. It turns out to be all for nothing anyway.
  • Maniac Magee: A runaway kid confronts racism in a small Pennsylvania town by becoming a living urban legend.
  • Manifold series: How to answer the same question three times.
  • The Man without Qualities: Mathematician takes a holiday from his life, gets entangled into the preparation of a birthday party, fends off the advances of his best friend's crazy wife and starts an affair with his twin-sister. Meanwhile a mentally challenged sexual offender is prosecuted for the murder of a prostitute.
  • The Marcus Didius Falco series: Sam Spade in a toga.
  • Mason & Dixon: Widower and womanizer travel around, look at the sky and draw lines on a map. There's a robot duck in it.
  • The Master and Margarita: A foreign magician arrives in Moscow. Chaos ensues.
  • Maximum Ride: Six Totally Radical half-bird, half-teens are on the run from a bunch of mad scientists.
  • Mein Kampf: A would-be artist who eventually starts one of the largest bloodbaths ever writes about his life's struggle. The book becomes popular when the artist rises to power years later.
  • Memory, Sorrow, and Thorn: The almost-ghost of an elf prince carries out a 500-year-old grudge; unwitting kitchen boy and his friends try to stop him with magic swords. They shouldn't have used the magic swords.
  • The Metamorphosis: Central European man turns into a bug. His father later kills him with an apple.
  • Metro 2033: A young man travels around the Moscow Metro, and then accidentally destroys the future of humanity.
  • Middlesex: A man falls in love with a woman and recounts three generations of his family's history to explain why he is unable to have sex.
  • Midnighters: A group of teenagers, including a gothy geek, a teen genius, an emo chick, and a rebellious Mexican, saves the world using junk. They exist outside of our timeframe, too.
    • Midnighters: The Secret Hour: The newest prep in school turns out to be the most powerful person on the planet.
    • Midnighters: Touching Darkness: A gothy know-it-all has problems with his touch-phobic psychic emo girlfriend, then defeats a conspiracy and becomes a creature of the night.
    • Midnighters: Blue Noon: The group of teenagers rushes frantically to stop one hour from being added to the day, using fireworks. One of them sticks her hand in a bolt of lightning and becomes a ghost.
  • Miss Marple: Old busybody pokes her nose into other people's business.
  • Mistborn: In a Crapsack World, the Emperor is immortal and strongly regulates prescience. Where have I read that before?
    • The Final Empire: A thief eats metal and joins a group of people trying to kill an immortal with cooler powers than them.
    • The Well of Ascension: A city is besieged for inventing democracy. The desperate defenders release a god in their bid of survival. The book's paper edition is unreliable.
    • The Hero of Ages: A side character overthrows communism by becoming something impossible. Then everyone hides from the god in book two in a penal mine.
  • Mister B. Gone: Two gay lovers, one an aristocrat and one a commoner, wander around Medieval Europe, until the printing press is discovered, and one betrays the other.
  • Moby-Dick: Petty jealousy inspires tireless pursuit of whale.
    • Or: a former school teacher tries to deal with midlife crisis. In order to do so, he applies to work for an Ax-Crazy boss . He finds consolation in the welcoming embrace of a lovable Polynesian native. Meanwhile, said boss leads all of his subordinates to a gruesome and inevitable death, all while talking at length in Ye Olde Butcherede Englishe, engaging in Satanic rituals and spending his free time with a little boy.
    • Or: Man tries to tell a story about a whaling trip, but ends up writing down absolutely everything he knows.
  • A Modest Proposal: Guy tries to pass a law supporting baby eating.
  • Momo: A worldwide organisation of Eldritch Abominations with the potential ability to end civilisation in a matter of days are defeated in less than an hour by a homeless little girl and a supercentenarian who likes to talk to a tortoise.
  • Montague Egg: A travelling wine salesman fights crime. He always has a couplet to cover the situation.
  • The Moon Is a Harsh Mistress: Malcontents vent their frustration by throwing rocks at the people in charge.
  • Mortal Engines: Undead cyborgs, cities that eat each other and Lost Boys with submarines. None of this is played for laughs.
  • Mrs Dalloway: An ill, post-menopausal woman buys flowers, receives a visitor, worries that her daughter may be bisexual like she is and hosts a dinner party. Meanwhile a shell-shocked war veteran commits suicide.
  • Myst: The Book of Ti'ana: An orphan stumbles across an underground civilization and accidentally allows its demise. The location has since been moved half a world away.
    • Myst: The Book of Atrus: A teen learns a difficult programming language from his father and then maroons him.
    • Myst: The Book of D'ni: Years later, he leads people to a Crapsaccharine World, not realizing some pathogens have come along for for the ride. Then he tries to alter the course of a revolution.
  • The Mysterious Stranger: Some bored buddies run into Satan's nephew who convinces them their lives are worthless.
  • Infernal Devices/A Darkling Plain: Environmentalists decide they're sick of large vehicles ruining the countryside.
  • The Name of the Rose: Two monks try to broker a deal in the Roman Catholic Civil Wars of the fourteenth century. Instead, they get a bunch of people killed and someone kills himself by eating a book. Rocks Fall, Everyone Dies.
    • Or: Two monks try to solve murders at a medieval monastery. After demonic possession is ruled out, a man eats a poisonous book, and ultimately it is discovered that the novel is postmodern critique of meaning.
  • Nancy Drew: Teenage girl pokes her nose into other people's business.
  • Nation: Two teenagers get stuck on a desert island alone together and don't have sex.
  • The Neverending Story: A boy reads a book and really identifies with the main character.
  • Never Let Me Go: Reminiscence by young woman gradually reveals horrifying premise.
    • Or, a bunch of people grow up being told exactly how they're going to die, and do nothing about it.
  • Neverwhere: A Scotsman helps a young woman he meets on the street, and ceases to exist. He spends the rest of the book following the girl he helped around London.
  • The New York Trilogy: A series of detectives do a great deal of navel-gazing, and fail to solve their cases.
  • Next: A pedophile blames his behavior on his genes, a Half-Human Hybrid is hunted down for his genes, and old man is being sued for possession of his genes, and an irresponsible man dies because he has genes that aren't his.
  • Night Watcher: A big city journalist revisits his home village and befriends a werewolf. They then go to the nearby provincial town to meet up with a superhuman being, an awesome dog and two cops. They Fight... Vampires.
  • Nightrunner: An angsty Bishōnen with a Dark and Troubled Past rescues a cute boy from prison. They Fight Crime.
  • Noble House: A whole bunch of people fight over half of a coin. None of them end up with it. Very Loosely Based on a True Story.
  • Nobody Gets The Girl: A man learns how to deal with being forgotten.
  • Odd John: A seemingly retarded boy commits several burglaries and one murder, before having sex with his mother, then finally taking a group of children to a small island where they all commit suicide. The story is narrated by a middle-aged journalist who believes the boy is super-human.
  • Odd Thomas: A fry cook sees dead people, hangs out with Elvis, and makes really good pancakes.
  • The Odyssey: Man arrives home very late after commute from hell and murders unwanted houseguests. And half the staff.
  • Only Revolutions: Two sixteen-year-olds spend 200 years traveling across the country.
  • On the Road: Some Hipster (older meaning of the word) goes on a road trip to his friends place in California.
  • The Old Man and the Sea: In Cuba, fishing is Serious Business.
  • The Man in the High Castle: This classic science fiction novel is set in an alternate universe, whose point of divergence is that a mayor of Chicago lived longer than he did in real life. —A man named Frank and his friend try to start a business making jewelry. Several characters mull over, argue about, and discuss how this jewelry should be marketed. —Meanwhile, Frank's ex-wife goes on a road trip through the Rockies to meet a famous writer, with her new boyfriend. When she finds out that her boyfriend isn't from the country he said he was from, but a country right next to it, they have a heated dispute, and she finishes the trip alone. —Meanwhile, a German man pretends to be Swedish. —Several characters read the I Ching a lot. Also, several characters worry a lot about the provenance of some real antiques and some reproductions. A Japanese man gets involved in a dispute about international relations, finds himself using a reproduction of an antique tool when he wasn't planning to, and subsequently has something of a breakdown. Later he takes an unexpected side trip. Frank becomes involved in a "custody" dispute. The novel leaves most of the plot threads unresolved.
  • Old Yeller: A kid shoots his dog after it saves his family from a wolf.
  • Oliver Twist: Abused orphan runs away to London, where he falls in with petty criminals.
  • Order Of The Odd Fish:A young waitress is swallowed by a giant fish and is barfed out on the beach of a surreal city that wants her dead.
  • Out of the Silent Planet: A Cunning Linguist is kidnapped and taken to Utopia.
    • Perelandra: Said linguist must save an Innocent Fanservice Girl from the wiles of a demon-possessed zombie.
    • That Hideous Strength: An organization of evil scientists threaten to subjugate humanity. The whole town goes down with it.
  • Paladin of Souls: Middle aged woman takes a vacation to escape depressing home life. Finds herself kissing a corpse or two and getting sexually assaulted by a half-demonic bastard.
    • Or; A Mad Queen gets stuck in a siege and learns how to pray. No, really, there is a plot.
  • Palimpsest: There are cool map tattoos. They're STDs.
  • The Pegasus series: In The Future, Psychic Powers are real, and vital to the economy, as they enable faster than light travel.
  • Percy Jackson and the Olympians Young man goes to a summer camp for other unusual teenagers like him while making friends, falling in love with his cousin and resolving issues with his new-found family using a magic pen.
    • The Lightning Thief: Young man goes on a quest to rescue his mother prisoner from his uncle in hell.
    • The Sea of Monsters: Young man goes on a quest to rescue his friend stuck in the Bermuda Triangle.
    • The Titan's Curse: Young man goes on a quest to rescue his cousin prisoner by a millitary group in San Francisco.
    • The Battle of the Labyrinth: Young man goes on a quest to find an old architect in his most dangerous creation underground.
    • The Last Olympian: Young man and several friends defend the Empire state building.
    • Heroes of Olympus: Young man goes missing. New powerful young teenagers prove that stuff can get done without him.
  • Perfume: A Super Villain whose only powers are The Nose Knows and perfume making terrorizes his country.
  • Peter Pan: An emancipated minor gives anti-gravity powder to three children and takes them to a tropical island where the eldest becomes his babysitter.
    • And it's heavily implied that they're actually all dead.
  • Pet Sematary: A man buries his cat. Some things are better left dead.
  • Promise of the Wolves: A young she-wolf devotes her life to winning over and becoming part of the pack that killed her brother and exiled her mom. She is later very surprised when said pack tries to kill her friends for no real reason, and must save aforementioned friends with the help of a shy intellectual, a raven who speaks mostly in haiku, and an old lady who's friends with at least one giant omnipotent god wolf. The book ends with her reuniting with her pack, and still trying to become one of them. This is considered a good ending.
  • Phantastes: A man stalks a woman all over Fairy Land, and encounters many strange and wonderful things that somehow end up teaching him about true love. She falls in love with another man, though, and he is killed by an evil cult. This is considered a happy ending.
  • The Phantom of the Opera: Serial killer can't be bothered to actually kill anyone with his favorite deathtrap, dies from a kiss to the forehead.
  • The Phantom Tollbooth: A bored boy drives a toy car through an education-themed world, which nonetheless has no rhyme or reason. Because he has nothing better to do, he goes to rescue two princesses who were locked up by their stepbrothers. Accompanying him are a blowhard insect and a dog that can tell time.
  • The Picture of Dorian Gray: A man never gets old due to his art collection.
    • Or: A man is poisoned by French literature. His portrait finishes him off.
  • The Pilgrim's Progress: A guy leaves his family to go on a one-way journey. He is often diverted from it. In the sequel, his family takes the journey.
    • Or: A religious tract the length of a novel. In 17th-century English.
  • The Player of Games: A game enthusiast goes on an extended and very eventful trip.
  • The Portrait of a Lady: Idealistic bookworm goes abroad, inherits a ton of money, gets proposed to by her childhood sweetheart and a nobleman, and then marries a petty sadist with an art collection and a dysfunctional relationship with his daughter. Everyone else discusses this at length.
  • The Power and the Glory: A drunken priest angsts and meets his illegitimate daughter while running from the cops. Eventually they catch him in what he knew was a trap.
  • Pride and Prejudice: Opinionated young woman meets snob and doesn't like him, until it turns out that she does.
  • The Prince of Nothing: A manipulative logician-monk, his insane, sociopathic sidekick and their shared girlfriend decide to join a holy war that none of them believe in so that they can assassinate the monk's father. Meanwhile, a sorcerer and a prostitute attempt to prevent the Ancient Conspiracy from bringing about The End of the World as We Know It.
    • Or: A wangsty sorcerer, a hooker with a heart of gold, and a berserk barbarian all meet up on a holy crusade led by a Nietzschean superman everyone thinks is a god. It isn't a comedy.
  • The Princess Bride: A guy produces a heavily-abridged version of his favorite book from when he was a kid.
  • The Princess Diaries: A nerdy teenage girl finds out she's actually the princess of a small European country. Teen drama and love triangles ensue.
  • Principia Discordia: A joke poses as a religion. Alternately, a religion poses as a joke.
  • Queen of Angels: A disturbed poet kills six people. In response, a cop goes abroad, the author writes about a writer, and a scientist and his ex-girlfriend investigate the poet's motives by taking a long nap. Meanwhile, a computer program and its creator discuss philosophical questions, while the world watches. Meanwhile, a space probe doesn't discover any aliens, as the world watches eagerly. There is an argument in a writing group. We learn about traffic conditions of the future. The subject of therapy comes up frequently.

  • The Queen's Thief: Politics. Lots and lots of politics.
    • The Thief: A young prince gets arrested in order to find a rock.
    • The Queen of Attolia: Bad things happen to the hero, ending with his marriage.
    • The King of Attolia: A soldier gets a promotion for inflicting violence on his boss.
    • A Conspiracy of Kings: A quiet bookworm hits his best friend and shoots people.
  • The Quorum Four boys meet in school and form a lasting friendship, until a satanic media mogul offers three of them success and good fortune if they keep messing up their other friend's life. They should have read Faust more closely.
  • Quozl: A colony of rabbit-like alien settlers on Earth are forced to go public using a Hollywood talent agent's plan and it works.
  • The Railway Series: A bunch of trains go on adventures, most of which have been Ripped from the Headlines.
  • Rainbow Six: Environmentalists use terrorists in a plan to kill the human race, international counter terror team is conveniently formed just as they start. Environmentallists die ironically.
  • Ramayana: A boy's mother kicks him out of the house. He proceeds to commit genocide on an entire race while hanging out with some monkeys.
  • Rant:Kid with an incredible sense of smell moves to the city, crashes his car and spreads rabies for fun, starts a civil war and goes back in time to kill his ancestors and become his own father, grandfather, etc.
  • The Rape of the Lock: The story of the most EPIC HAIRCUT THE WORLD HAS EVER SEEN and the war that followed. Based on a True Story!
  • Raptor Red: A wildlife documentary about ancient birdlike creatures in which you can hear some of the animals' thoughts.
  • The Rats in the Walls: Man grieving the loss of his son attempts to reconnect with his heritage, and finds a family recipe that he really likes.
  • The Raven Cycle: A Special Snow Flake teenage girl hangs out with four pretty boys who are looking for a really old Welsh guy. In Virginia. True Love's Kiss is involved.
  • The Raw Shark Texts: A man is chased by a meme. A girl has a guy living inside her brain and he wants out. Only half of the book has been published, with the other half being hidden across both the Internet and the rest of the world.
  • Red Storm Rising: Islamic terrorists blow up a Soviet oil refinery, triggering World War III.
  • Redwall: A young boy looks for an old knife so he can save a monastery from a rat infestation.
    • The Pearls of Lutra: A sailor is talked into jumping out a window and drowning. A repo man loses his job. Wanderers, a grieving daughter and inhabitants of a monastery use forensic science, spelling puzzles, archaeology, crafts, long distance travel, archery, and extreme violence against a group of weak-minded, economically unsustainable boaters, to dispose of calcium carbonate. A hypnotist trips on his pet, who bites him. A bunch of people are stranded on an island.
    • Outcast: A monastery adopts an orphan and subjects it to self-fulfilling Fantastic Racism. The orphan is asked to leave. Two guys on the run create a live-in repair shop in the mountains, and defend the repair shop and the monastery.
    • Mossflower: A government official breaks an illegal immigrant's knife. The illegal immigrant, a pantry raider, and two others use long distance travel to take the knife to a repair shop. When they come back with the repaired knife, they raise an army around a broom. A basement leak destroys an empire.
    • Mariel Of Redwall: A rower takes revenge on a pirate that can't stand the company of a bell. The pirate is killed by his own pet.
    • Alternately, for the whole series: A large group of humanoid animals build/live in a secular monastery, and are attacked a lot.
  • Reformed Vampire Support Group: A rehab group of diseased addicts have to solve a crime committed by a nerdy Post Office worker.
  • The Remains of the Day: A butler reminisces.
  • Remnants: NASA sends eighty people into space so that they can be lazy for 500 years and live inside famous pieces of artwork.
  • Remote Man: Five teenagers in four countries team up via the internet to bring down an international wildlife smuggler, in an age before Myspace and Twitter.
  • The Ripple Effect: A policeman's doughnut doesn't have jam in. Hilarity Ensues.
  • Rita Hayworth and the Shawshank Redemption: Banker covers his work with a pin-up.
  • The River Why: Fishing prodigy spends entire life fishing, goes insane, finds a dead body, gets better, meets love of his life, and discovers religion, goes on a vision quest. While fishing.
  • Riverworld series: Everyone who ever lived wakes up by a river. Some of the more famous ones try to find the source.
    • To Your Scattered Bodies Go: Some famous people try to find the source of the river.
    • The Fabulous Riverboat: Some different famous people try to build a giant boat so they can find the source of the river.
    • The Dark Design: The first two groups of famous people plus some other famous people try to find the source of the river with two boats and blimp.
    • The Magic Labyrinth: All the surviving famous people try to find the source of the river while the river falls apart.
    • Gods Of Riverworld: The remaining famous people forget their original goal while playing in their own personal Second Lives.
  • The Road: A man and his son hike from the mountains to the coast while people try to eat and/or rape them.
  • Romance of the Three Kingdoms: Three kings start a land war in Asia. Nobody wins.
  • Roverandom: A dog gets turned into a toy and has adventures on the moon and Under the Sea. From the author of The Lord of the Rings.
  • The Ruins: College students on vacation in Mexico get eaten by vines.
  • The Saga of the Noble Dead: Bitter young woman and her alcoholic sidekick run a scam pretending to slay vampires... only to find out it is her destiny to do so for real.
  • Sailor Nothing: A very tired young girl tries to quit being a Magical Girl. The morality of placing the fate of the world in the hands of prepubecent children is discussed at length.
  • Salt: A World History: A history of edible rock.
  • Saturn's Children: A robot created as a sex toy performs a series of errands for a corporation run entirely by butlers.
  • The Scarlet Letter: Woman cheats on husband, ruins her life.
  • The School: Everything dies. A man has sex.
  • The Screwtape Letters: An Obstructive Bureaucrat gives his nephew tips on how to mess up someone's life.
  • Search the Sky A guy flies from Crapsack World to Crapsack World to save the human race. On most of his stops he picks up new crew members.
  • The Second Jungle Book story "The King's Ankus" A Raised by Wolves kind of guy finds a priceless jewel-studded knicknack, but throws it away because he doesn't know the value of money. Later on he finds a bunch of people who've killed each other over possession of the knicknack, and decides it might be a good idea to hide it where nobody will find it again.
  • The Second Jungle Book story "Red Dog": A teenage boy defends a wolf pack from a horde of rampaging dogs by taking a python's advice to lure the dogs into a gorge where they will be stung to death by bees.
  • The Secret Garden: Following the death of her entire family, a young girl moves off the continent and learns how to not be a spoiled brat by growing plants.
  • A Series of Unfortunate Events: Three young orphans, including a baby, go through a series of abusive and/or ineffectual guardians, while being stalked by their arsonist cousin, their mother's first boyfriend, and a secret fire department.
    • Alternately: 3 orphans end up in the middle of a vast conspiracy involving espionage, death, and a sugar bowl.
  • SERRAted Edge: Modern-day wizard and his dragon mentor help The Fair Folk make it big in NASCAR. The latest book has him diving head-first into the Furry Fandom.
  • The Seven Pillars Of Wisdom: The true story of an British archaeologist who singlehandedly overthrew an empire. Was later made into an award-winning if slightly less historically accurate film.
    • Or: The most homoerotic philosophical account you ever will read about blowing up trains in the desert.
  • The Seven-Per-Cent Solution: Sherlock Holmes goes on a coke binge and hallucinates until Sigmund Freud cures his addiction.
  • Shades of Grey: A man dates a Tsundere to bring some color into his life.
  • The Shadow Over Innsmouth: A man spends the night in a town populated by fish-people.
  • Shape-Shifter: The Naming Of Pangur Ban: A kitten gets in trouble, and is hunted viciously because he doesn't have a name.
  • The Sharing Knife: A teenaged runaway finds herself sexually involved with, and mixed up in the deadly activities of, a wanderer three times her age.
  • Sherlock Holmes: A misogynist addicted to smoking and cocaine lives together with an ex-army doctor with a mysteriously migrating injury. Together, They Fight Crime! The Big Bad is a math teacher.
  • Shogun: The story of an Englishman who went to Japan and became a samurai. Very Loosely Based on a True Story.
    • Or, an Englishman in Japan cheats on his wife with two women from good families, both of whom end up committing suicide.
  • The Sight: A white wolf and her brother are born with a rare gift. As a result, most of their pack, their aunt, and the white wolf herself, all die.
    • Fell: The white wolf's brother reunites a woman with her long lost family, and rips out the throat of the woman's father's traitorous best friend. Many of the characters from the previous tale are dead, and many more characters are killed along the way.
  • Silverwing: A guy looks at the sun and gets his house burned down. He then spends the remainder of the book finding his family with a blonde girl and two Spanish cannibals.
  • Skellig A boy meets a bird-obsessed girl and finds a half dead angel in his garage, who he heals by feeding him Chinese takeaway.
  • Skulduggery Pleasant: A girl teams up with a living skeleton after her uncle is murdered. Together, They Fight Crime! Meanwhile, a man steals a wand in order to get his hands on a book. He fails.
    • Skulduggery Pleasant: Playing With Fire: A man nicks some armour so that he can make a patched-together zombie call some Eldritch Abominations.
    • Skulduggery Pleasant: The Faceless Ones: A farmer invites the Eldritch Abominations into our world. When they're sent home, they take the living skeleton with them.
    • Skulduggery Pleasant: Dark Days: The girl rescues the skeleton from the home of the Eldritch Abominations. Elsewhere, previous villains (and an idiot) team up in order to set off an atomic bomb at a football match.
    • Skulduggery Pleasant: Mortal Coil: Body-snatching shadows attempt to bring out their messiah - the girl's Superpowered Evil Side.
    • Skulduggery Pleasant: Death Bringer: Necromancers want to try out their idea to defeat death - by getting a girl to slaughter three billion people at the same time.
    • Skulduggery Pleasant: Kingdom Of The Wicked: A man wants to spread peace and love by attempting to give everyone magic powers. Everyone else (including the man's alternate-universe counterpart) points out how exceptionally stupid an idea this is.
    • Skulduggery Pleasant: Last Stand Of Dead Men: Believing it to be the right thing and a necessary evil, a man attempts to trick a particular group of superpowered people into attacking humanity. It backfires spectacularly.
  • Slaughterhouse Five: Young man fights in the Second World War, goes home, gets married, is abducted by aliens, goes home, dies. Not necessarily in that order.
    • Timequake: Feeling due for a change, the universe goes backwards for a little bit and everyone on Earth has to relive the last ten years of their life without free will.
  • The Sleepover Club: A group of ten year old girls have sleepovers in various places.
  • Snow Crash: Ex-delivery boy pursues knife-wielding Eskimo both online and off. Has much stuff explained to him, then fights Sumerian neurolinguistic death meme.
    • Or, a plot to Mind Control every geek in America is foiled when teenage skater chick with a thing for Mafiosi decides to deliver a pizza.
  • So Yesterday: Two teenagers investigate a really nice pair of shoes.
  • The Socratic Dialogues: A guy who claims to know nothing argues semantics with people who claim to know something. Later, he gets character derailed into being the sort of person he used to have arguments with.
    • Euthyphro: A guy tries to tell another guy about a lawsuit that he's involved in. The other guy proceeds to turn the conversation into one big semantics derail. Considered a classic of ancient philosophy.
    • Charmides: Soldier returning from war gets the hots for a teenage boy who suffers from headaches; tries to give the boy a headache cure he learned while overseas. Even more semantics derails ensue.
    • Phaedrus: Well thought-out arguments on why old men having meaningless sex with little boys is mutually beneficial.
      • Or: The author's thoughts on yaoi.
    • The Republic: A group of self-proclaimed geniuses proposed the perfect government while denouncing all other governments as little better than dictatorships, not noticing that they themselves are basically proposing a benevolent dictatorship. If you can finish it and understand what the hell they just said you deserve a degree in philosophy.
  • Song of Bernadette: Two barefoot teens meet in a filthy dump, dream of a future together and discuss bizarre plans involving a lot of people singing and taking baths.
  • A Song of Ice and Fire: A nobleman's friend gets him a job. Everyone's lives go all to hell. Meanwhile, an adolescent exile with no apparent magical, martial, or political skill decides she deserves to rule the world. Four books later, things still haven't settled down. Also featured: twincest, shockingly unexpected character deaths, and five-year layovers in Development Hell.
    • A Game Of Thrones: An austere northern aristocrat tries desperately to prevent his best friend's wife's family from screwing everyone over. He fails miserably. Meanwhile, a teenage girl has sex with a Genghis Khan expy, and decides to conquer the world. Her brother pouts about it, then has a bowl full of karma poured all over his head.
    • A Clash Of Kings: Aforementioned aristocrat's second son (or possibly his nephew) starts a war against frozen zombies, his eldest son starts a rebellion against a an insane child-monarch, his youngest son becomes a werewolf, his youngest daughter pretends to be a boy, and his eldest daughter stands around and stares at the wall while the plot unfolds around her. Also, a Machiavellian midget is cheated out of fame and fortune by a dead man.
    • A Storm Of Swords: War against frozen zombies continues, the revolution fails due to unforeseen nuptial issues, the eldest son's girlfriend complains about his lack of knowledge, the eldest daughter marries the midget, and a child-bride-turned global-conqueror wtfpwns her universe's equivalent of ancient Sparta. Remember how we said that anyone could die? We weren't kidding.
    • A Feast For Crows: The Caligula's failed attempts at being a ruthless despot blow up in her face, various power plays are put in motion, and a former government minister behaves very inappropriately towards his ex-girlfriends daughter. Meanwhile, a twelve-year-old girl flips out and start killing people over various perceived slights.
    • A Dance With Dragons: Everyone and their dog sits around and waits for about five years, then sets out to find the child-bride-turned global-conqueror and convince her to come and conquer them. It turns out she's more concerned with settling down and finding a husband. Meanwhile, the eldest son (or possibly nephew)'s alliance against the frozen zombies implodes because he decided to be practical for once.
      • The Hedge Knight: An amateur knight and a bald child enter a tournament.
      • The Sworn Sword: The amateur knight debates zoning boundaries.
  • Soon I Will Be Invincible: A genius wonders why he does the things he does while he's doing them.
  • Sophie's World: A girl learns philosophy from a book about a girl learning philosophy to escape a book about philosophy being read by the original girl, who as the reader knows, is also a character in a book about philosophy.
  • The Sound and the Fury: Three Southern brothers, of various intellectual competence levels, angst about their sister.
  • The Spirit Ring: Hot-Blooded town-reared girl and easygoing young man-mountain of a mountain man strive to save her father and his brother from a Fate Worse than Death.
  • The Stand: Everyone dies. A bunch of survivors travel to Colorado by the instructions of an elderly lady, while the Antichrist runs Las Vegas.
  • Stardust: A young man travels into a magical kingdom to find a meteor to give his girlfriend, except the meteor is another woman. The Film of the Book has a gay (well, transvestite) pirate.
    • Alternatively, guy goes on quest to bring a girl a meteorite. Meteorite has other plans.
  • Star Trek: Deep Space Nine — A Stitch in Time: A guy writes a really long love letter to deal with his religious doubts.
  • Star Wars: The New Jedi Order: One hundred or so warrior monks seek to stop an invasion of tattooed barbarians from another galaxy.
    • The Thrawn Trilogy: A fledgling government is threatened by an art critic and a mad esper. A former operative cannot kill the man she's obsessed with killing.
      • The Hand of Thrawn Duology: The art critic's student make overtures at the no-longer-fledgling government; his people freak out and conspire to make it look the art critic is Back from the Dead. The no-longer-fledgling government all but implodes over a twenty-years-old issue. The ex-operative and the man she didn't kill wander around in caves and fall in love.
      • Outbound Flight: The art critic, as a much younger man, learns new languages and about new people and what droids are, then squabbles with the original mad esper, which makes his people kick him out.
    • I, Jedi: A fighter ace spends longer facing the Trials than in training.
    • Death Star: Mooks gradually come to realize that they are on the wrong side. A doctor thinks longingly of a woman who died twenty years ago and still doesn't know if he was in love or not. One of the greatest mass murderers in history angsts.
    • Yoda: Dark Rendezvous: The oldest and wisest of the warrior monks confronts a rebellious pupil. One of the youngest warrior monks, knowing that she's not very magical, strives to make up for it. An actor who sometimes plays the oldest warrior monk gets mistaken for the real thing.
    • the Medstar Duology: A warrior monk joins several doctors, a reporter, and a spy in a hellhole. The doctors fall in love and angst, the reporter quizzes a robot about the meaning of sentience, the spy gets homesick, and the warrior monk struggles with a drug addiction and promotes herself. Then the reason why everyone's on the hellhole becomes pointless.
      • the Coruscant Nights Trilogy: A couple of warrior monks who survived a genocide try to get by right under the nose of the evil psychic cyborg who was partially responsible for the genocide, and who knew one of the warrior monks before becoming evil.
    • Starfighters of Adumar: A pilot whose personal life has just collapsed in ruins is sent as the diplomatic envoy to a planet inhabited by people who basically worship him, where he refuses to kill them until changing his mind.
    • Tales from the Mos Eisley Cantina: A bunch of people go into a bar. One of them dies there, and three more die soon after. The most heroic of the four deaths is omitted.
      • "We Don't Do Weddings: The Band's Tale"'': A band gets a gig in said bar.
      • "A Hunter's Fate: Greedo's Tale": A lowlife gets betrayed by his best friend.
      • "Hammertong: The Tale of the 'Tonnika Sisters'": Two members of an Amazon Brigade steal part of a WMD
      • "Play It Again, Figrin D'An: The Tale of Muftak and Kabe": Two street urchins steal some data
      • "The Sand Tender: The Hammerhead's Tale": A Technical Pacifist in exile is responsible for a Complete Monster's demise.
      • "Be Still My Heart: The Bartender's Tale": A Jerkass learns sympathy.
      • "Nightlily: The Lovers' Tale": A Corrupt Bureaucrat seduces a space babe of a completely unfamiliar species. His lethal Critical Research Failure is the reason the aforementioned tattooed barbarians did not triumph.
      • "Empire Blues: The Devaronian's Tale": A mass murderer relaxes and chats with the Jerkass.
      • "Swap Meet: The Jawa's Tale": A businessman with a dead brother attempts revenge. It is revealed in a different story to have failed tragically.
      • "Trade Wins: The Ranat's Tale": And another businessman's trick is the reason.
      • "When The Desert Wind Turns: The Stormtrooper's Tale": A Two-Scene Wonder has a Heel Realization
      • "Soup's On: The Pipe Smoker's Tale": An obligate parasite has an unintelligible monologue.
      • "At the Crossroads: The Spacer's Tale": A spacefarer working for corrupt monks has a bit of trouble.
      • "Doctor Death: The Tale of Dr. Evazan and Ponda Baba": A Mad Scientist tries to bestow immortality through Grand Theft Me.
      • "Drawing the Maps of Peace: The Moisture Farmer's Tale": A farmer tries to establish peace between settlers and natives.
      • "One Last Night in the Mos Eisley Cantina: The Tale of the Wolfman and the Lamproid": A pilot in an out-of-control fighter has visions before crashing
    • Tales from Jabba's Palace: A day in the lives of a vile Psychopathic Man Child's slaves and syncophants.
    • The Corellian Trilogy: A national leader who has chart-breaking ESP abilities takes her family to her husband's homeworld just before an insurrection breaks out.
    • Allegiance: A Five-Man Band goes AWOL; an operative investigates a corrupt politician and develop doubts.
    • Luke Skywalker and the Shadows of Mindor: The galaxy is threatened by an old man who has weaponized fanfiction, and wants the bodies of two of the stars in his fics. One of said stars angsts tremendously.
    • Splinter Of The Minds Eye: A brother and sister stumble around on and under a muddy world in the middle of nowhere, sometimes with an old con artist and a pair of temperamental giant monkeys. The siblings have staggering amounts of UST and almost kill their father.
    • New Hope: the Life of Luke Skywalker: A farmboy mulls over his past, particularly his many almost-relationships with unsuitable women (his sister, a careless thief, a robot, a psychic vampire...) and decides to forgive people who are years dead for lying to him.
    • Darth Plagueis: A Corrupt Corporate Executive kills his mentor, gets a telepathic Anthony Marston into politics, and then gets double-crossed.
  • The State Of The Art: Hedonists explore an alien planet.
  • The Stepford Wives: In a small Connecticut town, the objectification of women is carried to an extreme.
  • Stephanie Plum: Jersey girl chases naked felons and blows up cars.
  • The Stone Dance of the Chameleon: A story about a society of racist, sexist creeps who are really into mutilation.
  • Stoneheart: A boy annoys a rock when he breaks a statue.
    • Ironhand: A man really wants a particular pair of mirrors.
    • Silvertongue: A formless ice-creature visits London, only to be sent back from where it came by being shoved through a pair of mirrors.
  • The Strange Case of Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde: Reclusive scientist and brutal man have weird connection. Features drug addiction.
  • The Stranger: A Frenchman goes to jail after the sun makes him shoot someone and is beheaded for not crying at his mother's funeral. There is also a robot who is not really a robot.
  • Stranger in a Strange Land: Martian Jesus preaches salvation through cannibalism and drinking water. He is opposed by football-loving pharisees. A cynical retiree provides commentary.
    • Or: A Possession Sue of the Archangel Michael preaches about a foreign culture. Nudity ensues.
  • Stravaganza: Teenagers with issues are transported to a different dimension and undergo therapy they didn't ask for. Not Digimon Adventure.
    • City Of Masks: Boy with cancer dies, but not from cancer.
    • City Of Stars: Bifauxnen participates in a horse race, gets kissed by the queen, who knows she's a girl. Meanwhile, a boy kills himself to live in the future.
    • City Of Flowers: Dark-Skinned Blond becomes a priest in the most corrupt city of Rennaissance Italy.
  • A Study in Emerald: A Great Detective investigates the death of one of the Great Old Ones. Turns out that Holmes and Watson are the real killers, and the person we were led to believe was Holmes is actually Dr. Moriarty.
  • Subcommittee, short story by Zenna Henderson: Fuzzy rainbow aliens run out of salt and invade Earth. Two cute little army brats and their moms save the day.
  • Summer in Paris, Light from the Sky, short story by Ken Scholes: Adolf Hitler teams up with Charlie Chaplin and Ernest Hemmingway, begins the French Revolution, and prevents the Holocaust.
  • Summerland: The son of a Bungling Inventor (who is terrible at baseball) teams up with his Tomboy best friend, a boy who thinks he's an android, a werefox, a sasquatch, a talking rat, a midget giant, and a few baseball-obsessed fairies to save the world...by playing baseball. He does all of this on the advice of a fortune-telling clam named "Johnny".
  • Suzumiya Haruhi: A Genki Girl abducts, physically abuses and sexually assaults a group of random strangers who can't resist because doing so would bring about The End of the World as We Know It. The supporting cast includes a Deadpan Snarker, an Emotionless Girl, a Shrinking Violet and a professional Ho Yay enthusiast.
  • Sweet Valley High: A pair of perfect size six California girls attend high school. In the early few books, one of the girls claims a boy from school tried to rape her because she was annoyed that he wouldn't kiss her goodnight; the other is in a motorcycle accident that makes her suddenly become more flirtatious, ending in the richest boy in school attempting to rape her when the effect wears off. A Long Runner series spawning several Spin-Off series and well over 500 total books.
  • Tai-Pan: A Scotsman colonizes an island, promotes gambling, acquires a harem, and is killed in a typhoon.
  • Tairen Soul]]: The problems inherent in an elf king marrying a woodcutter's daughter.
    • Lord of the Fading Lands: Woodcutter's daughter avoids getting married to an abusive jerkass by instead marrying a man who nearly caused the apocalypse.
  • The Tales of Alvin Maker: A Mormon-themed epic fantasy series set in an über-folksy AU version of the American frontier, with tons of cameos from obscure historical figures.
  • Tales of MU: Slice-of-life story featuring a pacifist cannibal, a girl who wants to not want, a dwarf with a sylph's beard, an errant trap, a comic book geek's wet dream, and the token human/male.
    • Alternately: Bisexual S&M Demoness goes to college, makes friends and gets into relationships. Stuff happens.
  • Tanglewreck: In A Universe where time is Serious Business, everyone wants a particular clock. All the while, an eleven year-old girl become best friends with a underground-dwelling boy. Mind Screw and Technobabble ensues.
    • The Battle Of The Sun: A boy goes on a Chain of Deals in order to get a spaniel, while a man tries to turn the city of London into gold. After a while, the eleven year-old protagonist, and two villains from the previous book show up. More Mind Screw ensues.
  • Tarzan: Half-naked orphan with nobility backstory deals with animals and lost civilizations.
  • Teaser and the Firecat: A guy in a top hat and a clumsy orange cat must put the moon back in the sky. Written by a pop-turned-folk musician who later converted to Islam.
    • Moonshadow: The same as a cartoon narrated by Spike Milligan and featuring a song by said pop-turned-folk musician.
  • The Technicolor Time Machine: Some guys try to make a big-budget movie in one day. Vikings and Native Americans are involved. Hilarity Ensues.
  • Temeraire, or His Majesty's Dragon: An Officer and a Gentleman throws away his Naval career for his new pet.
  • The Tenant of Wildfell Hall: A woman leaves her abusive husband, and then doesn't tell people that she's married.
  • Thinner: Man discovers alternative to diet and exercise.
  • The Third World War: World War Three breaks out and two cities get nuked.
  • Three Worlds Collide: Mankind makes contact with two separate alien species. One of the species wants to have sex with us, and the other wants us to eat babies. Ultimately, everyone lives Happily Ever After; this is considered a bad ending.
  • Time Enough For Love: A suicidally depressed immortal rants about random topics for the first two-thirds of the book. His friends decide to cheer him up by sending him back in time to have sex with his mother.
  • The Time Machine: Man tells weird story about workers quarreling with bourgeoisie, ends it with an octopus.
  • Time's Eye: Rudyard Kipling and a helicopter crew help Alexander the Great battle Genghis Khan.
  • Timeline: A bunch of historians and a medieval reenactor get stuck in the Middle Ages.
  • To Kill a Mockingbird: Mentally-challenged man rescues ham from poor white trash out to avenge family honor.
  • To Say Nothing of the Dog: A pair of time travellers go to Victorian England to try to play matchmaker and look for a really ugly vase.
  • To The Lighthouse: A bunch of people take ten years to make a simple journey. Half of them die.
  • Tolkien's Legendarium: Vast armies fight over jewelry.
    • The Hobbit: A midget is roped into reclaiming some lost jewelry for a band of dwarves.
    • The Lord of the Rings: An angel defeats the Evil Overlord by having underlings destroy his stolen jewelry.
      • The Fellowship of the Ring: A Ragtag Bunch of Misfits is pulled together to dispose of jewelry stolen by the old midget from the prequel.
      • The Two Towers: A nation is nearly offed for supposedly owning a piece of jewelry, while two midgets and a psycho get away with the real thing.
      • The Return of the King: The Dragon learns about prophecy loopholes the hard way, then the king leads a hopeless charge, while valuable jewelry gets destroyed. The Magic Goes Away, along with more jewelry.
    • The Silmarillion: For centuries, elven clans squabble over three family jewels they don't even own anymore.
    • The Children of Húrin: Everything a guy does goes ghastly wrong. No jewels are involved.
  • The Tortall Universe: Women do important things and have lots of romance.
    • Song of the Lioness: A young woman has many identity crises.
      • Alanna the First Adventure: Ten-year-old girl with gender identity issues decides to become a professional crossdresser.
      • In the Hand of the Goddess: Then her love life gets complicated and she kills a man.
      • The Woman Who Rides Like a Man: So she gives up the crossdressing and decides to vacation with Fantasy Counterpart Culture Muslims.
      • Lioness Rampant: Finally her taste in jewelry saves the kingdom.
    • The Immortals: Girl talks to animals and fights giant metal birds with human heads and later falls in love with her teacher, who is twice her age. And her father actually has horns.
      • Wild Magic: Girl can talk to animals. This makes her special.
      • Wolf-speaker: Her adopted family asks her to help them move.
      • Emperor Mage: She goes to another country and loses her temper.
      • The Realms of the Gods: She meets her father, and her parents meet her boyfriend.
    • Protector of the Small: A Japanese culture fangirl follows in the ex-crossdresser's footsteps.
      • First Test: She beats up bullies and learns to kill spiders with a sword.
      • Page: She fights more bullies and goes through standardized testing.
      • Squire: A year magically gets lost when Japanese people come to stay.
      • Lady Knight: Her first job is building and running a backwater homeless shelter.
    • Daughter of the Lioness: The ex-crossdresser's daughter goes birdwatching abroad.
      • Trickster's Choice: Girl runs away from home and moves in with a family of foreigners.
      • Trickster's Queen: She and some birds overthrow the government.
    • Provost's Dog: A young woman joins the town police. They Fight Crime.
    • Tortall And Other Lands: Nawat: A man ponders the morality of killing his newborn daughter.
      • TAOT: Huntress: Teenage girl is converted to religion through a Deus ex Machina.
  • Tristram Shandy: A man attempts to tell his life story but keeps getting distracted.
    • Or: An autobiography that ends before the author is born.
  • The Twelve Chairs: Two guys look for some furniture.
  • The Twelve Kingdoms: Redhead from Japan gets "taken home" to rule over a world that vaguely resembles China.
  • Twilight: Ordinary girl moves to new town and ends up in a love triangle between a vampire and a werewolf.
    • Sextet, really. Twilight, New Moon, Eclipse, Breaking Dawn, the novella The Short Second Life of Bree Tanner and the unpublished manuscript Midnight Sun.
  • Uglies: A girl chases down her best friend, who ran away to avoid getting plastic surgery. She eventually steals her friend's boyfriend and kills his father. The Culture Police approve.
  • Ulysses: A man walks around aimlessly all day while his wife does not cheat on him. Incomprehensibility Ensues.
  • Uncle John's Bathroom Reader: A series of trivia-humor-reference books with a bathroom theme.
  • Uncle Tom's Cabin: A guy's life goes from bad to worse. A Bible-thumping Author Tract that stops the story every few chapters while the author sounds off. Said to have started a bloody civil war.
  • Use of Weapons: An advanced alien civilization makes inaccurate predictions about the military prowess of an identity thief who turned his cousin into a chair.
  • Vatsy And Bruno: First Ink: Two filthy animals run around the city chasing a man with hideous facial hair in pursuit of a journal article.
  • Valdemar Series: Chronicles about 3000 years of history, in which most of the heroes begin their journey by getting kidnapped by a white horse.
    • Arrows of the Queen: Mentally and physically abused shut-in gets kidnapped by a white horse, and almost immediately becomes the second-highest ranking person in the kingdom.
    • The Last Herald-Mage: Spoiled brat gets sent to boarding school, angsts a lot, comes out of the closet, angsts some more, eventually becomes the most powerful person ever to have existed, and angsts over that. Dies at the end of it.
      • Or; gay magician is traumatized most of his adult life and gets himself blown up at thirty-five.
    • Mage Winds: A princess wants to Screw Destiny, but her horse won't let her.
    • Mage Storms: A sheltered priest learns from a talking cat that God might not be a Jerkass after all. Also, a time-traveling magical cataclysm threatens to rip apart and rearrange the world, and the results are not pretty.
    • Take A Thief: A street kid intends to steal a horse, but the horse steals him instead.
    • Brightly Burning: A pyro engages in Interspecies Romance while stopping an enemy invasion. Later commits suicide.
    • By The Sword: Tough little girl does what she feels is right with the help of a picky sword and is chased about by a song for the rest of her days. After leading a ragtag company of soldiers-for-hire, she does the right thing again - and then she gets kidnapped by a white horse. Meanwhile, it takes her and her true love ten years to get their act together.
    • Vows and Honor: Girl is gangraped as her family is murdered, swears off men, and insists on tracking down the perps. Said suicide mission gets less suicidal when another girl with a sword butts in. They end up buds for life.
  • VALIS: An obese man who loves horses is contacted by a Soviet alien who is actually God who is actually a mentally challenged being who is actually God.
    • The Divine Invasion: A lonely man brings half of God back to Earth and falls in love with a singer.
    • The Transmigration of Timothy Archer: A depressed girl spends her time at a self-help seminar ruminating over the loss of everyone she ever cared about. She cons the self-help guru out of a record and everything is alright.
  • Varieties of Disturbances: A woman attempts to symbolize death through flies. Multiple times.
  • Villains by Necessity: A wizard who's just trying to make the world a better place meets resistance from a band of adventurers (including his son, and a former ally in his pursuits) who just don't get it.
  • Vampire Beach: A romantic series called Vampire Beach.
  • Vorkosigan Saga: A woman runs away from home to find true love, ends up joining the aristocracy, and gives birth to a deformed midget genius. The midget genius travels around the galaxy and develops an identity crisis, which causes him to believe that he is the commander of a mercenary army. Dupes several thousand mercenaries into supporting this belief.
    • A cripple from a planet that kills crippled people proves his worth by killing healthy people.
    • Falling Free: Biological experiments learn of their obsolescence and run amok.
    • The Warrior's Apprentice: A deformed military academy washout bullshits his way into command of a warfleet... by accident.
    • The Vor Game: Newly minted Ensign gets assigned to an undesirable post to learn subordination. He ends up involved in a mutiny, (re)gains control of an interstellar warfleet, throws multiple superior officers into the brig, and threatens his Commander in Chief with a crew-served weapon.
    • Mirror Dance: A troubled twenty-something engages in a bit of identity theft, deals with the psychological repercussions of his abusive childhood, gets closer to various family members, and runs afoul of a vindictive ultra-capitalist mad scientist space pimp.
    • Memory: Medical problems and habits of scam artistry catch up to a secret agent before he hits 30. He ends up with another job.
    • A Civil Campaign: Semi-retired super spy attempts to apply his covert operations skills to courtship. The operative term is attempts.
    • Captain Vorpatril's Alliance: A lazy nobleman rescues a Mafia Princess through a Citizenship Marriage and struggles to get out of it.
  • Vurt: A man searches for a magic feather that contains a virtual world that contains another magic feather that contains another virtual world where he must relive his worst childhood memories in order to swap his pet tentacled alien monstrosity for his long lost sister.
  • Waiting for Godot: Two men have vaguely philosophical conversations while waiting for someone who never shows up.
    • Or: Nothing happens. Twice.
  • Walden: guy lives in a cabin for a few months, not really doing much.
  • Walking On Glass: A man goes to meet his girlfriend, whom he suspects of having an affair with her brother, two war criminals play impossible games to earn the right to answer a riddle to which they will learn the answer by reading the book in which they're characters, and a paranoid schizophrenic loses his temper with various bureaucrats and finds the answer to the war criminals' riddle.
  • War and Peace: Ruffians tie a constable to a bear and throw him off a bridge. The French invade.
    • Alternately: A bachelor with a large inheritance angsts about his life and marries his best friend's fiance.
  • Warm Bodies: A zombie who lives in an airport falls in love with a human after eating her boyfriend's brain.
  • Warrior Cats: Some groups of cats fight over territory, engage in inter-group romance, worship the night sky, and sunbathe. Every so often, one or more of said cats has a nightmare that predicts the future in a vague way.
    • Warriors Super Edition: Bluestar's Prophecy: Door Stopper about the life of one these cats.
    • Warrior Cats: Feline Hitler usurps his leader. The Chosen One uses the power of friendship to dethrone him.
    • Super Edition: Firestar's Quest: The Chosen One tries to rebuild a society that hasn't existed for twenty years. Has marriage problems along the way.
    • Warrior Cats: The New Prophecy: Urban development threatens the forest. The cats find a new home, and proceed to do more of the above for the rest of the series.
    • Power of Three: Three cats born with powers try to figure why they even have them in the first place, and don't make much progress. Briefly gets sidetracked by just how messed up their family is, and some guy trying to convert everyone to atheism.
    • Omen of the Stars: Hell declares war on heaven, and the above mentioned cats are still trying to figure out why any of this is happening. The beginning briefly features beavers.
    • Dawn of the Clans: A prequel series in which a bunch of people who will become famous (but don't yet know that) fight over their various ideologies and have turf wars. Anyone who's read the other books knows how it will end.
      • Thunder Rising: A young boy is torn between his adoptive father, who took the boy in and raised him as his own, and his real father, who left the boy to die when he was a baby and never cared about him. Angst ensues.
    • Super Edition: Crookedstar's Promise: Cat has a disability and tries to live with it. A vengeful ghost pretends to be responsible for the deaths of random other cats.
    • Mistystar's Omen: A doctor is fired because she's an atheist. But it's okay, because God tells everyone to give the doctor her job back.
  • The War of the Worlds: Humanity is saved by the common cold.
  • The Wasp Factory: A young psychopath, emasculated in a tragic accident in early childhood not really, murders insects and his relatives with elaborate death traps.
  • Watership Down: A groups of bunnies run away from home in search for a better place to live.
    • And later look for does to mate with.
    • Or: A psychic bunny and his friends escape death only to face a battle against paramilitary, Nazi bunnies.
  • The Watsons Go to Birmingham—1963: A light-hearted story about a family road trip ends in a near-fatal encounter with Winnie the Pooh's Evil Twin. And the 1963 Birmingham church bombing.
  • We: A mathematician decides to write a book for aliens about how their impending subjugation/annihilation is actully a good thing. His girlfriend takes issue with this position.
  • The Wandering King: A prince loses a poetry competition. This ends up causing the fall of a kingdom.
  • The Westing Game: Millionaire picks his heirs because they live in the same building as his murderer, dies several times before blowing up his estate as a birthday present for his wife.
  • Whateley Academy: A group of mismatched students from all walks of life gain superpowers and learn about themselves as they grow up at the world's most prestigious Superhero Academy.
  • What The Raven Saw: Misanthropic raven catches a thief and helps some people cope with death.
  • The Wheel of Time: Some farm kids discover that they are main characters, and that they have to stop Satan and his cronies before one of them goes mad and destroys the world for them.
  • When My Sister Was Cleopatra Moon: A second-generation Korean-American woman realises that her sister was (and still is a bit of) a jerk.
  • Whirlwind: After the king abdicates, some miners decide to take their helicopters and go home. At the same time, another man, his wife, and his wife's ex-lover take a trip across some mountains.
  • White Fang: Alaskan wolf is abused by various people before moving to California and living happily ever after.
  • Wicked: A green-skinned woman goes through a journey of college woes, animal rights activism and Wangst just to be killed with water.
  • The Wild Road: Sir Isaac Newton is mean to kitties!
  • Wild Cards: Alien germs are dropped on Manhattan by a pulp villain, giving people superpowers when they aren't hideously mutated or killed outright. Alien scientist can't keep it in his pants, psychic fanboy flies around in an armor-plated Volkswagen, the Tyranids show up in the guise of an ancient Sumerian goddess, and in the latest installments, kids with superpowers start off on American Idol but end up stopping a genocide.
  • The Wind in the Willows: A peasant, a river man and a forest wise man try to cure their ADHD noble friend of his on-the-fly, erratic obsessions. Road rage, prison breaks, theft and property repossession abound.
  • The Winds of War/War and Remembrance : A group of family and friends travel the world to watch people killing each other.
    • Occasionally they lend a hand at killing people, because they are such a Badass Family.
    • Meanwhile a Jerkass German officer writes a long book on the reasons why only Germans should be allowed to kill people.
  • Winter's Tale: A swamp-dweller finds a horse. Beauty ensues.
  • The Winter's Tale: A man exits, pursued by a bear. Some other stuff happens, but nobody remembers any of it.
  • The Wish Giver: Two girls and a boy learn to Be Careful What You Wish For after the first girl learns to speak bullfrog, the second girl turns her crush into a tree, and the boy finds water.
  • The Witcher Saga: A Magic Knight with white hair deconstructs classic Fairy Tales.
  • Wizard's Bane: A guy defeats an evil overlord by inventing a new programming language.
  • Wolves of Willoughby Chase series plucky young British children— in particular a girl whose parents named her after a barge— foil multiple evil plots. Includes graphic descriptions of child labor in factories, children being deliberately killed in said factories, people being devoured by wolves and giant birds, people consuming parts of other people, a plot to shoot a giant cannon at St. James palace from Nantucket, a plot that successfully puts St. Paul's cathedral on giant rollers, hallucinogenic peas, and much more of a similar ilk.
  • Women: Misanthropic drunk becomes semi-famous, and has sex with a woman. Then he has sex with another woman. Then another woman has sex with him, and then another. Maybe a few more after that. Oh heck, it's almost 300 pages of sex. With added middle-aged angst!books.
  • So You Want To Be A Wizard: Nerdy girl saves the world with a stolen library book after Satan turns off the sun.
    • Alternatively: Nerdy girl tries to save the world with a stolen library book; can't read in the dark.
    • Deep Wizardry: Girl agrees to sing silent part in whale opera.
    • High Wizardry: Girl's younger sister finds magical computer and goes to Mars to find Darth Vader. Eventually plugs computer into planet in order to create robots to fight Satan.
      • Alternatively: Girl spends hours designing computer programs she later argues with.
    • A Wizard Abroad: Girl's mother is concerned about her extra-curricular activities, and so sends her to Ireland in the hopes that it's "just a phase". Everyone knows this is pointless. Also, a Ship Tease with an Emo Teen.
      • Alternatively: Girl goes to Ireland on vacation and isn't allowed to do any fun magic.
    • Wizard's Dilemma: Cancer has no cure, and everyone is sad.
    • Alternatively: Girl fights cancer - not her own.
    • A Wizard Alone: Autism, however, does have a cure, especially if you are pure of heart.
      • Alternatively: Boy spends most of his time in his own head; someone tries to get him out.
    • Wizard's Holiday: Satan wants a utopian alien race to transcend into pure energy. The Heroes aren't sure what to make of this. Also, a girl and her father make their new houseguests feel at home.
      • Alternatively: Kids go on vacation and end up having to work. The rest of the family takes in exchange students.
    • Wizards At War: It's The End of the World as We Know It, and Adults Are Useless by their own admission.
      • Alternatively: Girl tries to avoid squishing a bug while a dog decides not to blindly follow humans.
    • A Wizard of Mars: Time-travelling Martians commit Grand Theft Me on a boy and girl who are definitely not in a relationship. Really.
  • Worm: In a Crapsack World where superpowers are common (but that hasn't stopped nearly everyone from being douchebags of varying degrees) a teenage warlord plays with bugs and ponders the nature of morality.
  • Xanth: In Bizarro-Florida, everyone has magical powers. And there are puns. Awful, awful puns.
  • Xeelee Sequence: Humanity wage war against aliens. The aliens don't notice.
  • X-Isle: A boy and a disguised girl go to live on an all-male island. Once there, they and the other teenagers procced to systematically drive off/kill the adults, with their initial weapon of choice being a bomb made from their collective farts.
  • TheYearOfOurWar: A flying cat shoots drugs, hallucinates, and fights bugs.
  • Zod Wallop: A group of people take a novel way to seriously.
  • Zodiac: An Eco-Thriller: A Well-Intentioned Extremist takes drugs, has sex, eats charcoal, manufactures smelly chemicals, gives people embarrassing nicknames, and saves Boston from some kind of virus.

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