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  • In John Green's An Abundance of Katherines, Lindsey has a cave. It seems like more of a short tunnel. She's never had anyone else in there, but she wants the protagonist to go in. She remarks that it's a bit tight, but she'll guide him in. She also notes that she must have overlooked that opening a hundred times before noticing something special around eighth grade, when she started using it whenever she was having "me time".
  • In The Adventures of Pinocchio, Pinocchio's Disney Death scene where the Fox and the Cat hang him from a tree while disguised in hooded robes, eerily resembles a Ku Klux Klan lynching.
  • In The Amazing Days of Abby Hayes, Laurie, a hardcore Granola Girl who follows an incredibly strict diet consisting solely of organic foods, finds chocolate in her five-year-old daughter's sleeping bag, and immediately becomes furious at Abby for giving it to her. The scene is played out as if the chocolate was some kind of illegal drug. Which, from Laurie's point of view, it is.
    Abby: [writing in her diary] She said I had betrayed an innocent child's trust. She said Wynter would bear lifelong scars. She made it sound like I had committed an awful crime.
  • "Angel Down, Sussex" is about an apparent Changeling Tale in the 1920s, with a lot of similarities to Alien Abduction lore that are invisible to the characters but visible to the reader. Apart from the inherent similarities between fairy abduction and alien abduction legends, there's a strange visitor who switches between human and reptilian form, a group of The Greys, an Anal Probing incident, unidentified flying objects, livestock mutilations, crop circles, and a pair of strange men in black suits and tinted spectacles who show up near the end and confiscate the evidence.
  • Angels of Music takes the format of the 1970s TV series Charlie's Angels and moves it a century earlier and across the Atlantic. The opening plays up the similarities between 1970s America and 1870s Paris:
    Towards the end of the seventies—that colourful, hectic decade of garish clothes, corrupt politics, personal excess and trivial music—three girls were sent to the Paris Opéra...
  • Aunt Dimity:
    • A meta-example: Peter Harris' disguised himself in Aunt Dimity and the Deep Blue Sea as a dark haired young man with glasses named "Harry Peters" to avoid hordes of reporters after his grandfather wrote a letter to The Times bragging about him. Hmm, a dark haired young man with glasses plagued by fame...
    • Lori is struck by waves of déjà vu when she goes to Bluebird, Colorado: many of the locals closely resemble her neighbours in Finch, down to similar-sounding names.
    • At the close of one of their conversations on Mistress Meg Redfern in Aunt Dimity and the Village Witch:
    You've grown fond of Mistress Meg, haven't you?
    "Yes, I have," I said.
    I can understand why. She was independent, bullheaded, energetic...Hmmm...Who does she remind me of?
    "Goodnight, Dimity," I said with a wry smile.
    Good night, my dear.
  • The Baby-Sitters Club:
    • The whole plotline about Stacey's diabetes and the associated stigma leading to her moving away from New York lest she lose all her friends. In retrospect, the series' origins in the late eighties makes it likely the diabetes stood in for HIV (considering very few people lose their friends over having diabetes).
    • It's mentioned constantly that Mary Anne's father loosened up considerably when he started seeing Dawn's mother. Adults rereading the series might read between the lines a bit.
  • In A Bad Case of Stripes, Camilla's Involuntary Shapeshifting whenever something is suggested is symbolic for changing who you are because of peer pressure.
  • In Being Able to Edit Skills in Another World, I Gained OP Waifus, when Nagi adjusts modifies, or inserts new skills into his slave harem, the light novel goes on to describe the girls' reactions in numerous Japanese euphemisms for sex. In the manga, it's somewhat more explicit as it shows skill "building blocks" being removed and inserted in ways that the close-ups seem to illustrate nipple to nipple contact between Nagi and the female slave he's currently "adjusting."
  • In Robert A. Heinlein's Between Planets, the hero receives a tatty ring-the least of rings, you could say (it's literally the kind you'd get for a quarter from a gachapon toy machine at the supermarket)-entrusted to him by an elderly family friend, which reveals its true nature under a specific set of circumstances. How do we know this isn't a straight Shout-Out? Because Between Planets predates LoTR by a good three years.
  • In The Berenstain Bears and the Sleepover, the Sleepover that Sister Bear is attending ends up going way out of control to the extent that the police arrive shortly thereafter and the parents take the children home to punish them, and then they have to clean up the mess. Gee, that sounds like something from a stereotypical Party House from one of those high school films like Superbad.
  • In the novel Beyond, the lands of Orbis are very similar to exploration-age Europe.
  • Carrie:
    • invoked Well, let's see. A girl, sweet and shy, is bullied mercilessly by her classmates. She has a trait that makes her different — not evil, just different. When she reveals this trait to her fanatically Christian mother, her mother decides to murder her. Finally embracing this trait ultimately gets the girl killed. (And, in some adaptations, she kills herself.) Put in that context, the entire thing can be read as a Coming-Out Story Gone Horribly Wrong. And that's not even mentioning the fact that the mother literally keeps her in a closet. It's no surprise that the story has a massive LGBT Fanbase.
    • invoked On a different level, some people, most notably Stephen King himself, have seen parallels between Carrie's story and that of many school shooters, particularly the common archetype of the put-upon loner who snaps and goes on a rampage.
  • In John H. Ritter's Choosing Up Sides, 13-year-old Luke's left-handedness is treated in the same manner as homosexuality. His father has always tried to correct his tendencies, for fear he'll go to Hell, and Luke believes for a while that he can change if he tries hard enough. His uncle even tells him there's no point in trying; he's simply "oriented that way".
  • In City of Fallen Angels , Simon says that Kyle grows weird plants on his balcony. He then follows it up by claiming they aren't drugs. The plants turn out to be wolfsbane.
  • Volume 4 of Cooking With Wild Game has a scene where Ai Fa "orders" Asuta to sleep in the same bed with her. Asuta feels pretty anxious about this, having never done it before, but wants very badly to acquiesce and eventually does. Combined with his utter lack of fear and Ai Fa reassuring him that it's his choice to make, the passage reads like a couple trying BDSM for the first time.
    Ai Fa: You should have listened to me obediently from the start.
  • In A Dance with Dragons, Melisandre leads Stannis's army in chanting, "One God, one realm, one king!!"
  • In Diamonds Are Forever, Wint is in the habit of sucking on his thumb (specifically the wart on his thumb, but his thumb nonetheless). Considering Wint's homosexuality, the act strongly suggests oral sex.
  • In-universe, at the end of The Diamond of Darkhold, where Doon has to once again put together with Lina some letters that have been broken apart by deciphering the phrases. It sparks off their Maybe Ever After.
  • Discworld:
    • Frequent parallels are drawn between magic and nuclear power/science: born of the structure of the universe, it's immensely powerful and can be employed for much benefit, but has to be handled with great care. Places where it went wrong are left barren and toxic and may simply be craters, and the waste products are dangerous and damaging for centuries afterwards, but generally it's perfectly safe to be around right up until the moment when it very much isn't. This is due likely in part to how Sir Terry Pratchett was once a press officer for Britain's nuclear energy providers, and best summed up with the below quote from Going Postal:
      "That's why [magic] was left to wizards, who knew how to handle it safely. Not doing any magic at all was the chief task of wizards—not "not doing magic" because they couldn't do magic, but not doing magic when they could do and didn't. Any ignorant fool can fail to turn someone else into a frog. You have to be clever to refrain from doing it when you knew how easy it was. There were places in the world commemorating those times when wizards hadn't been quite as clever as that, and on many of them the grass would never grow again."
    • The wizards are a contentious group, clashing, talking over each other, getting distracted, going off on tangents and arguing over details, but they always figure out what kind of magical trouble is happening, what it means and what they need to do about it. Pratchett has quite a lot of scientist fans who say that this is very similar to the way scientific research really works, and is true for academia in general.
    • One that sticks to the forefront is everything to do with female dwarfs seems to be just like gay people in the real world. It Makes Sense in Context, as female dwarfs look so much like male dwarfs that a large part of dwarfish courtship involves figuring out if the other person is actually a different sex from yourself. Recent attempts by some female dwarfs to assert their femininity haven't been met kindly by the more conservative factions.
      • The allegory shifts over time to include allusions to Transgender people's plight in the real world. Since the dwarfs are, at least on the surface, a One-Gender Race (the gender in this case being dwarf), any dwarf identifying as the "wrong" gender gets about the same reaction as people beginning transitioning do in real life. There's even a case of "self-trans panic" in the books, wherein the villain of The Fifth Elephant turns out to be a closeted "female dwarf" who had a mental breakdown due to a combination of stress and cognitive dissonance—she was a prim and proper dwarf, but prim and proper dwarfs don't have dreams of wearing leather skirts and flowing chainmail dresses—brought on by the growing dwarf femininity movement.
    • In Thud! the clash of ideals between moderate and extremist dwarfish factions closely resembles similar conflicts in the history of religion, Islam being the most prominent one in recent times. The Fifth Elephant also makes the point in the same dwarfish context that "conservative" does not necessarily mean "extremist".
    • In Small Gods, the shape of the world controversy within the Omnian Church is clearly based on the Catholic Church vs. Galileo. Of course, there's lots of delicious Irony to be had in that the Omnians' claim that their world is a round sphere orbiting a star in space is actually false, as the Discworld is a provably flat disk balanced on the back of four elephants that in turn stand on the shell of a giant turtle with a miniature sun and moon orbiting it.
    • Jingo is centered around a conflict between the Westernized Ankh-Morpork and the Arabia-metaphor country of Klatch. Anti-Klatchian prejudice bears a remarkable similarity to the xenophobic ignorance shown against Middle Eastern peoples, and the illogic of this stance is lampooned many, many times. In this case, the prejudices are about both the modern religious terrorists angle, and the old British colonial stereotypes.
    • The Black Ribbon Society, a group of vampires which have pledged to give up blood, which clearly resembles the Temperance movements of the late 19th/early 20th century, and more recent movements such as Alcoholics Anonymous.
    • In Guards! Guards!, a drunken Vimes says (paraphrased): "Ah, life... it grabs you... kicks you in the... in the... y'know, thingies... that you have in the mouth... Teeth. That's it."
    • Angua wears a leather collar as a part of her everyday clothing and calls her boyfriend "master" (albeit not to his face). She's a werewolf, and has a mild case of dog-like instincts towards humans, but it clearly resembles BDSM.
  • Dracula: Metaphorical sex, intertwined with violence and shame, abounds.
    • Toward the end, the vampire forces Mina to drink some of his blood from his chest. The protagonists walking in on this event feel both awkward and enraged. Afterwards, Mina is traumatized and ashamed, and struggles to explain what happened to her husband. She laments her doomed soul and blames herself for "not want[ing] to hinder him".
    • Jonathan's incident with the Brides comes across, for one not already expecting vampiric goings-on, to be the Count having a jealous fit about someone else getting to (ahem) kiss his guest.
    • When the three men go to Lucy's tomb. Helsing tells Arthur (Lucy's husband) that he has to be the one to drive the stake through her heart. It takes him several minutes to drive the stake all the way through, and Lucy writhes and screams as he does so. When it's done he feels great, and Lucy's face finally looks relaxed and at peace. After the other two men finish their work, they leave the tomb and find the world is suddenly full of sunshine and happiness.
  • In the Dragaera novels, the Teckla rebellion is clearly reminiscent of a communist revolution. In fact, in one book, a ridiculously long-lived character actually seems familiar with Marx's text and makes this comparison.
  • The Dresden Files:
    • Black Magic is frequently and explicitly compared In-Universe to a severe drug addiction; It's incredibly hard to get rid of, there's always a danger of someone falling off the wagon and being consumed by their addiction after they first get a taste, just the merest "sample" of it almost irrevocably tarnishes how virtually anyone else (particularly authority figures) see you, and letting it consume inevitably results in your demise along with you ruining the lives of everyone around you.
    • The eternal rivalry between the Summer and Winter Courts of the Faeries bears more than a passing resemblance to the Cold War between the United States and the Soviet Union respectively. Both sides are pretty much equal in strength, one side (the Winter Court/Soviet Union) is generally characterized as being stoic and ruthless while hailing from a frozen-over wasteland along with being typically seen as the "evil" side in their conflict (when they actually aren't completely evil), and the other side (the Summer Court/United States) is generally characterized as being emotional and empathetic while hailing from a far more temperate and warmer landscape along with being typically seen as the "good" side in their conflict (though, again, they're not all that good). To make the parallels even clearer, it's repeatedly made obvious that a full scale conflict between them would, in the best scenario, largely wipe both sides out and send the world back into the Stone Age, but if it looks like one side's showing weakness ...well, the other side just has to exploit it even if it's a ridiculously self-destructive move. That's what archenemies do, right? The later books make this even more apparent, with The Reveal that the Winter Court's primary job is to Hold the Line against the Outsiders being a loose parallel to how the Soviet Union was one of the most significant factors in ensuring the fall of Nazi Germany.
    • In Grave Peril, Harry is captured by the Red Court and, while he doesn't go into detail about what they do to him, Bianca's straddling him and shifting from beautiful, seductive woman to terrifying, monstrous vampire, the way the Red Court finds feeding to be a key turn on, in a dark variant of Erotic Eating, and his statement "They did things to me," subtly plays up the gang rape angle. And, when he appears a few months later in Summer Knight, while he's grim, anti-social and short-tempered partly because he's spent his time trying to cure Susan and failing, it's not unreasonable to suggest that at least part of it is his reaction to what they did to him.
    • A lampshaded, in-universe example occurs in Ghost Story. Ghost!Harry, being incorporeal, tries to possess Molly's body and channel magic through it. She fights this initially, trying to push him out, but relaxes after he tells her his identity and lets him go inside her. She notes how suggestive it was later.
  • Dr. Seuss:
    • The Butter Battle Book concerns two peoples split by a trivial ideological difference (which side toast should be buttered on), locked in an arms race that escalates to the point that if either side actually acts, both will be destroyed. If this sounds exactly like the Cold War as seen by its detractors, congratulations, you just got the point of the book.
    • The Sneetches is this trope about racism. There are Star-belly Sneetches and Star-less Sneetches, and the Star-Belly Sneetches have cookouts and picnics that the Star-less Sneetches are excluded from and generally look down on the Sneetches without stars. Then a Snake Oil Salesman shows up with a way to give the Star-less Sneetches stars, and when the Star-Bellies get incensed at the inability to tell the difference, said salesman gives them an opportunity to remove their stars and the "hierarchy" switches, and then all of the Sneetches end up removing and regaining their stars until none of them have any more money to pay the salesman...only to decide that since no one was quite sure who was who, they might as well forget about this whole prejudice thing and live together.
  • Dune's whole "desert planet where everybody speaks Arabic with the most important substance in the galaxy" thing.
  • In Vikram Seth's novel An Equal Music, brilliant musician Julia suffers gradual hearing loss. Guess who else did?
  • Fire & Rescue Shifters implies that Ash's slavery had a sexual element to it, what with his jailer gloating about how he's used countless children before Ash and how they trusted him because they were orphans desperate for any sort of human contact. The metaphor also explains why Ash feels guilty for his perfectly healthy sexual attraction to Rose.
  • Used In-Universe in The Forbidden Game. After an accident at her Grandfather's house when she was five, Jenny was covered in scratches, her clothes were torn and she refused to talk to anyone. Jenny's friends had been under the assumption that her Grandfather had hurt her before disappearing, but after confronting her memory in the game they eventually find out it was the Shadow Men.
  • In Jasper Fforde's The Fourth Bear, the MP Sherman Bartholomew built his reputation on being the first openly gay Member of Parliament, but is secretly straight. His husband is aware of his dalliances with women, and has agreed to support him if any of them were to become public knowledge. The same book also featured talking bears who developed addictions to honey and porridge, which were therefore controlled substances.
  • The fourth and final novel of the Wayfarers series by Becky Chambers, The Galaxy, and the Ground Within, explores several concepts analogous to real-world situations:
    • The premise is of a group of travellers and their host on a planet suddenly subjected to a travel ban due to a global disaster. There are informative broadcasts from the authorities, plans thrown into disarray, families suddenly separated, attempts to express support for and solidarity with neighbouring homes, and a medical emergency which the characters are are unable to manage, forcing them to sit by and wait for help to arrive. The book was released in 2021.
    • Pei's dilemma of whether or not to take advantage of her Shimmer mirrors the debate over abortion. In the end the advice from another character is that she should do what she wants.
    • The Akarak species has a history of being subject to slavery and colonisation, and their current situation is very reminiscent of refugees trying to find a home, complete with the lack of understanding from the bureaucracy of the Galactic Commons.
  • Goblin Market is full of this trope, sometimes disturbingly so, with multiple scenes that suggest a connection between the consumption of food and seduction or attempted rape.
  • The Han Solo Trilogy: Moff Sarn Shild is not attracted to human females. He keeps Bria Tharen as his supposed mistress for cover, as his sexual tastes aren't acceptable in the Empire. The fact that it's specified "human females" even implies this isn't just a metaphor for a closeted gay man, but he's actually attracted to males of other species in particular.
  • Harry Potter:
    • The werewolf Fenrir Greyback seems to have some pretty heavy "sexual predator" undertones, what with all his salivating over young children and whatnot. For that matter, the third book's treatment of lycanthropy in general seems to take many cues from the historical treatment of AIDS; at the end of Prisoner of Azkaban, Lupin decides to quit his teaching job when the school finds out that he's a werewolf, knowing that the students' parents wouldn't trust "someone like him" with their children.
    • The dementors — faceless demonic entities that subdue their victims by feeding on their happiness, forcing them to relive their worst memories, and making them lose their will to live — can be seen as personifications of depression. As J. K. Rowling has since admitted, that's not an accident: she wrote The Prisoner of Azkaban, where the dementors first appear, after recovering from clinical depression.
    • An In-Universe example in The Chamber of Secrets and its film adaptation when Draco mocks Harry's clumsy spin move to dodge a rogue Bludger during the Gryffindor-Slytherin match.
    Draco: Training for the ballet, Potter?
    • Again in The Chamber of Secrets: Harry's (and Ginny's) interaction with Tom Riddle's diary is extremely similar to that of an online chat room, as well as the part about the person being conversed with being revealed to not be trustworthy at all to begin with, a similarity made even more apparent in the film. It looks like the fear of every early Internet user's parents: a shady character takes advantage of an unsuspecting kid who met them online. Naïve Ginny pours out her soul “to an invisible stranger” she knows only through their text conversations and thinks she is making friends with this person. In reality he’s manipulating her, getting her to do things she normally wouldn’t, and when she goes to meet him in person she nearly ends up dead.
  • In the eighth volume of Haruhi Suzumiya, Haruhi tries to get the last page of Kyon's short story because she wants to know the aftermath of the date. He unconsciously touches his blazer, and Haruhi, being the Genre Savvy girl, immediately works out where he hid it and wrestles him to the floor, in this position. Followed soon after by this position. Guess what came to Mikuru's mind when she walks in on this. You're right.
  • In The Heroes of Olympus there is an amnesiac hero with a ton of martial skills and esoteric knowledge named Jason.
  • In The Hunger Games, in District 11, the dark-skinned population is forced to farm and are treated with particular brutality. This sounds a lot like slavery in the American South. Panem and District 13 are nuclear powers locked in a stalemate. Panem is decadent, wealthy, and corrupt. Its citizens enjoy outrageous luxury while they exploit the surrounding communities to feed their enormous appetites. District 13, on the other hand, is a dull and drab place, ruled by an at least equally totalitarian regime that regiments every aspect of its citizens' lives. That's how the US and the USSR portrayed each other during the Cold War.
    • In the real world, critics have noted many similarities between the basic concept of the trilogy and Battle Royale, which also dealt with children being forced by the government to fight to the death, with the same use of allegiances, supposedly doomed lovers facing the moment they might need to kill each other, the revelation that even children can become psychopathic murderers, and a rebellion movement of sorts.
  • Anything and everything that happens or is discussed in Invisible Man has something to do with race relations, from the ingredients in the paint the main character helps to make, to the cast-iron bank he keeps trying to get rid of. It gets more than a little Anvilicious at times.
  • I, Robot:
    The monster's head bent slowly and the eyes fixed themselves on Powell. Then, in a harsh, squawking voice — like that of a medieval phonograph, he grated, "Yes, Master!"
    Powell grinned humorlessly at Donovan. "Did you get that? Those were the days of the first talking robots when it looked as if the use of robots on Earth would be banned. The makers were fighting that and they built good, healthy slave complexes into the damned machines."
  • In Lord of the Flies, there is a scene with a mother pig, whom the boys force away from her piglets, and then spear. This is reminiscent of some soldiers gang-raping a mother. A few quotes, in chronological order:
    The spear moved forward inch by inch and the terrified squealing became a high-pitched scream.

    Then Jack grabbed Maurice and rubbed the stuff all over his cheeks.

    "Right up her ass!" [One of the boys is bragging about where he managed to get his spear.]
  • Many have compared The Lord of the Rings to World War II. However, J. R. R. Tolkien will probably rise from the grave and beat you to death with his magnum opus if you make that claim. See Applicability.
  • In The Magician's Nephew, the Deplorable Word is a dark spell that quite obviously a very Anvilicious depiction of the nuke.
  • In the second book of Miles Taylor And The Golden Cape, "Rise Of The Robot Army", when told he has to cut back on being Gilded now that he's in Eighth Grade, Miles starts to become desperate to do so and starts looking for even the most minute reason to don the cape, almost as if it's become a drug for him. He even starts sneaking out, and goes on a huge overnight "heroism" dose. He even reacts to having the cape confiscated from him like he's an addict who's suffering from withdrawal.
  • The setting of Neogicia has neomancers, a type of human that can happen only via Bio-Augmentation. The only other way to bring new neomancers into the population is to have two neomancers of different sexes get together and have children. People that were born neomancers tend to look down of those that have changed from normal human to neomancer within their lifetime. This resembles the attitude that some second generation and later immigrants can have towards new immigrants in countries subject to immigration.
  • Of Fire and Stars: Dennaleia telling Mare she has an Affinity is much like someone coming out as LGBT+ (it's made pretty ironic since they love each other, with the revelation about that soon following), and she's overjoyed at Mare's acceptance of her.
  • In The Penderwicks, Jeffrey's only friends (as far as we know) are the eponymous quartet of Penderwick sisters and he is revealed to have a talent for playing music. However, his overbearing mother wants him to go to a military school to follow in his grandfather's footsteps. Hmmm...
  • In Phenomena, a pair of elf twins are adopted by a wizard called Sha-ra. This wizard lives with a winter bear he saved named Arol, and they have a Sensitive Guy and Manly Man dynamic with Arol being the manly man. Arol often imaginines the twins being his own cubs, as well as Sha-ra seeing them as his own children. Even though the twins sorta want a mother are they happy with the two they got.
  • Red Moon Rising (Moore): The basic treatment of wulves is quite similar to that of racial minorities in the modern world. The kennels are seen as internment camps by wulves and wulf-sympathizes, which isn't too far off since there were actual internment camps for wulves during WWII. The Change and stigma associated with it rings similarly to mental illness. Danny telling his mom about his wulf side surfacing is a lot like a Coming-Out Story, complete with him being temporarily kicked out.
  • Ever notice how, in the Redwall series, the male villains are always trying to steal the supposedly magical Sword, yet the female villains ignore it completely, with the exception of Tsarmina, who breaks it in half and imprisons its owner?
  • In Right Ho, Jeeves Bertie relates Jeeves the descent and fall of Augustus Fink-Nottle, from Newts as a harmless hobby to a dark obsession:
    Bertie: ... Well, Gussie has always been a slave to them. He used to keep them at school.
    Jeeves: I believe young gentlemen frequently do, sir.
    Bertie: He kept them in his study in a kind of glass-tank arrangement, and pretty niffy the whole thing was, I recall. I suppose one ought to have been able to see what the end would be even then, but you know what boys are. Careless, heedless, busy about our own affairs, we scarcely gave this kink in Gussie's character a thought. We may have exchanged an occasional remark about it taking all sorts to make a world, but nothing more. You can guess the sequel. The trouble spread,
    Jeeves: Indeed, sir?
    Bertie: Absolutely, Jeeves. The craving grew upon him. The newts got him. Arrived at man's estate, he retired to the depths of the country and gave his life up to these dumb chums. I suppose he used to tell himself that he could take them or leave them alone, and then found—too late—that he couldn't.
    Jeeves: It is often the way, sir.
  • The Scholomance: Played for Drama when El fights a Blob Monster that tries to breach her magical shields and assimilate her. It's a traumatic, invasive experience that's described like an Attempted Rape, and it gives her a Heroic BSoD afterwards.
    And the only good my shield did for me was that the maw-mouth couldn't quite manage to get in, yet. Like a tongue trying to push between my lips, and I was able to keep them shut, and it couldn't get my legs open. But I'd get tired eventually, I'd have to give up.
  • The Silence Trilogy contains two examples:
    • Once Tannis Valk realizes he's an AI, his behavior from asking (and sometimes begging) to be permanently turned off to constantly having existential crises to actively looking to prove that he's useful to those around him is a realistic interpretation of those who suffer from major depression and suicidal ideation.
    • The discrimination Bury faces because of where he comes from and how he looks is very similar to the discrimination faced by immigrants and ethnic minorities.
  • Star Wars: Shatterpoint is a very thinly veiled allegory for European imperialism, mish-mashing various elements from the colonization of African and South and South East Asian nations (the off-worlders come to Haruun Kal to harvest and export the valuable rare spices and other plants) and the genocide of indigenous peoples (the Korunnai and their herds are shot on sight by civilians and militia alike). The whole planet could easily be considered a ramshackle African nation if set on Earth. There's also more than a few parallels with The Vietnam War, what with invaders with superior technology fighting a protracted war with no end in sight against local guerrilla fighters who use the jungle itself as a weapon. Once Mace Windu arrives and sets the planet straight with the help of the Republic army, he declares the whole mess a "police action" rather than a war, a phrase which instantly brings The Korean War to mind. Windu's reasoning is sound, however; if not for bribery and corruption, the Republic law enforcement would have nipped the problems in the bud long ago.
  • Star Wars: Lost Stars: The valley kindred on Jelucan, the first Human settlers there, have the looks of real world Black people and are fairly poor. Second-wavers, on the other hand, are described as looking like White people and have more affluence. They also have distinct cultures, both causing prejudices toward each other, though milder than most actual racism between Black and White groups.
  • Sword of Truth: The series introduces antagonists who have spoke rhetoric that's pretty obviously communist, starting with the first book's villain Darken Rahl (he lives in the "People's Palace", has a "People's Peace Army" and lectures a peasant on how his duty is to aid others-he's also a vegetarian), then increasingly so with the Imperial Order. Naked Empire has pacifists so committed they're basically suicidal, who also use slogans straight out of 20th century American anti-war movements. This all seems fairly out of place in the medieval European fantasy setting that the books take place in (though such groups occasionally occurred even then, it was always far more on the fringe and soon suppressed by the establishment).
  • The Tale Of Magic:
    • Magic is considered a sin and a choice and is punishable by death in most areas. The main source of this claim is a religion that’s completely coincidently similar to Christianity. There’s also facilities meant to cure people of their magic.
    • Brystal has a disorder that prevents her from performing magic the way she intended. It’s called magiclexia.
    • In the sequel, Brystal struggles with feelings that she’s a failure. She constantly feels like she’s in a bad mood. While it’s revealed she was cursed, the author has referred to Brystal’s struggles as her depression.
  • Transformers: Exodus has a very likely unintended example that sounds like a romance novel set-up:
    Orion Pax listened, and cataloged, and archived, and indexed, but his mind was not on his work... Who was this Megatron, this gladiator thug, killer of criminals and criminal himself, who gave voice to a longing that Orion Pax had never known he felt?
  • Twilight:
    • New Moon has young men literally exploding out of their clothes when they turn into animals. Predatory animals.
    • Eclipse has two instances of one of those young men "showing his love" by forcing himself on a girl, just in case we didn't get it the first time.
    • The historical conflict between the werewolves and vampires is very reminiscent of the wars between Native Americans and the European colonists. In fact that's almost literally what it is, the werewolves are all members of a specific First Nations tribe and, while not all vampires are white, vampirism first arose in Europe and only came to North America with the settlers. Vampires also see themselves as superior to werewolves and their leaders are headquartered in Rome, widely seen as the birthplace of European civilisation; and the wolves only begin transforming when vampires enter their territory.
  • Utopia: Utopia sounds a lot like a communist paradise. Nobody owns anything, people live together in communes, everyone takes what they need from warehouses when they need it, the state provides free hospitals, everyone has a job and works when they want (provided it meets a minimum of six hours a day), and generally everyone is happy with their lives.
  • Ignore the context of this conversation from Vampire Academy and all the background knowledge you have of the characters for a moment and read this. Sounds as lovers confronting each other.:
    “Why didn’t you tell me?” She cried.
    “I couldn’t tell anyone,” I said.
    “You should have told me,” She repeated, “I feel like you don’t trust me.”
    “Of course I trust you.”
    “Is that why you’re sneaking off?”
    “That has nothing to do with trust,” I admitted, “It’s me... well, I didn’t want to tell you. I couldn’t bear to tell you I was leaving or explain why.”
  • Warrior Cats:
    • Spottedleaf's Heart is about a young Spottedpaw who becomes interested in the much older Thistleclaw. Even as a kit, Thistleclaw was very friendly towards Spottedpaw so she always looked up to him. Thistleclaw asks Spottedpaw to be his mate and, when she protests due to her age, he says he'll wait until she's older if he has to. Their relationship doesn't turn out well because Thistleclaw has ulterior motives. Essentially, the book is about child predators. There's even a point where Thistleclaw asks Spottedpaw to meet up with him alone, late at night, and to not tell anyone (they end up going to the Dark Forest, which is essentially cat Hell, and it is against the Warrior Code to train there).
    • In Veil of Shadows, a cat eats a poisonous berry in order to get between life and death so that he can figure something out while in spirit form. Some readers compared this to suicide, while others felt it a more accurate comparison would be taking a dangerous drug to hallucinate.
  • Wayward Children: The Vampire Monarch of the Moors targets beautiful young girls to adopt, raise as his "daughters" and compliant victims, and transform into vampires upon reaching adulthood in a way that's described very similarly to a sexually abusive parent.
  • Glen Cook's Water Sleeps is meant to be reminiscent of The Vietnam War. A small force fights a guerrilla war against a numerically superior army with a powerful entity at its head, with the distinct impression that said entity doesn't care much about the health of the country it's occupying. The local powers regret letting her in in the first place, but have no way of getting rid of her. All of this happens on a backdrop of jungle and city. If that doesn't do it for you, the monk who immolates himself in front of the seat of government early in the story will.
  • Who Needs Men?, which follows young Lieutenant Rura Alexandra in her Lady Land homeland's genocidal war against a less developed patriarchal society, provides social commentary on several levels.
    • The low morale and poor discipline among the units Rura serves with rather resembles the stereotype of Americans in the Vietnam War, or more darkly, some of the reports of the Nazi counterinsurgency forces on the Eastern Front in World War II (that also took part in genocidal operations). Depending on how uncharitable one wishes to be, the charismatic Prime Minister Curie Milford (who is the war's most prominent advocate) can be read as a sort of expy of either Lyndon Johnson and John F. Kennedy, or Hitler and Stalin.
    • On a more personal level, there is also Rura's horrified reaction when she realizes that she might be in love with a man, as well as how she progresses from there. Since lesbianism and Homosexual Reproduction are normative in Anglia's all-female society and male-female attractions heavily stigmatized, and Rura herself has only been with women before, her thoughts are confused, ashamed and guilty in a somewhat similar way as one might have expected if she had found herself homosexual in a more traditionalist culture.
  • In The Witcher novels the presence of the Witchers can be sensed as a tingling sensation by sensitive people. There's a reason why they all seem to attract the opposite sex quite a bit. Likewise, in The Blood of the Elves a 13-year old girl learning to be a sorceress draws power from the earth, an experience that's described in a manner reminiscent of menstrual cramps and concluding in an orgasm.
  • Roald Dahl's The Witches includes a scene where the protagonist is dragged out of hiding by a group of witches and force-fed a potion as they hold him down.
  • DH Lawrence's Women in Love has Gerald Crich, the typical manly man. In one of the scenes, he's shown riding a horse, and a train comes by. The horse is naturally afraid of the noise, but Gerald holds her there and forces her to endure it. The way it's written makes it sound like a rape scene, and it's very unsettling.