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Literature: Noughts & Crosses
Noughts & Crosses series is set in a world where the people with dark skin (Crosses) are dominant over the white people (noughts), written by Malorie Blackman. The title is a reference to the game Noughts and Crosses (tic-tac-toe).

This series consists of:

  • Noughts & Crosses
  • An Eye For an Eye
  • Knife Edge
  • Checkmate
  • Double Cross


This series provides examples of:

  • Alpha Bitch:
    • Bliss, one of Callie Rose's classmates. To the point where she calls Callie's hair "Blanker hair."
    • Averted with Cara Imega, who cares for Jude regardless of race until she is killed off by Jude.
  • Alternate History: The reason why there is so much prejudice against noughts is because they were enslaved by people from Africa, rather than the other way round.
  • Beta Couple: Cara Imega/Jude, and Tobey and Callie Rose.
  • But Not Too White: Which is the in-universe equivalent of But Not Too Black.
  • Children Are Innocent:
    • Played completely straight in young Callum, Sephy, Callie.
    • Brutally averted by the younger peers in Callie's school.
  • Crapsack World: If you're a nought. Also, Britain is a rare example of dystopia/Crapsack World in that society functions well.
  • Crowning Moment Of Heart Warming:
    • At the end of noughts And Crosses, Sephy and Callum confessing to each other that they love each other as he is hanged.
    • The eventual reconciliation between Sephy and Callie at the end of Checkmate is truly beautiful.
  • Does This Remind You of Anything?: And how. Much of the attitude against noughts mirrors prejudice against Black people during segregation in America, and to a lesser extent attitudes towards black people in Britain until the 1960's. The Liberation Milita are realistic Well-Intentioned Extremist, and Kamal Hadley's political policy of "sending white people back where the came from," resembles some peoples ideas about immigration in (modern) Britain. There is even a reference to a KKK-esque band of Crosses who tied a nought to the back of a car and dragged him till he died for being in a Cross only area.
  • Downer Ending: Depends on which book you read. The only reason the trope averts itself is because the And the Adventure Continues.
  • Dude, She's Like in a Coma: Tobey to Callie Rose.
  • Drowning My Sorrows: Jasmine from the start, then Sephy as a teenager.
  • White Menial Labour: Meggie is a housemaid, Sarah is a cleaner, Tobey works in a shop for a while, Callum in a garage...
  • Not So Fantastic Racism
  • Fantastic Slur: Nought, Cross (although those are politically correct, "nought," means to be nothing, not worthwhile,) Blanker, Dagger, Halfer. The list goes on.
  • Earn your happy ending: Toby's struggle throughout his entire A Day in the Limelight book is for this cause. The entire series is this because it is the final book
  • Generation Xerox: Sephy names Callie Rose after her father.
  • La Résistance: The Liberation Militia
  • Mama Bear: Meggie. Mcgregor. And Jasmine Hadley.
  • Meaningful Name: Persephone (Sephy) Hadley.
  • The Ophelia: Lynette, in a creepy, realistic way. "But I'm a Cross. Look at my skin, so dark and rich..."
  • Papa Wolf: Ryan Mcgregor to his children.
  • President Evil: Kamal Hadley was planning on being Prime Minster, but he didn't succed.
  • Rebellious Princess: Sephy. (A modern version as politicians daughter).
  • Save the Villain: Sephy to Jude, so she can help his mother, Meggie.
  • Sleazy Politician : Kamal
  • Star-Crossed Lovers: Sephy and Callum.
  • Token White: It is mentioned by Meggie that in all T.V shows there will only be ONE nought if any.
  • Unfortunate Implications: Invoked In-universe.
  • Where Da nought Women At: Lynette and her mentioned boyfriend, Jed. They are almost killed because of it, sending her over the edge.
  • Woobie, Destroyer of Worlds: JUDE.


Northwest FrontAlternate History LiteratureThe Parasol Protectorate
NationLiterature of the 2000sThe Neanderthal Parallax

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