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  • The Adventures of Pinocchio: Pinocchio and the other boys who have been lured to Toyland are after a while transformed into donkeys.
  • Alice's Adventures in Wonderland features a baby turning into a pig, possibly in accordance with the will of the Duchess, or it might be that Wonderland is the kind of place where babies sometimes spontaneously turn into pigs. In any case, as the baby was previously subject to severe Black Humor abuse from the Duchess and Cook, Alice decides it's better off as a pig and leaves it to its own devices.
  • In the book All Tomorrows, future humans are conquered by the Qu, an extremely technologically advanced civilization. As punishment for terraforming different planets and killing the native life-forms, the Qu forcibly reengineer humans into unintelligent, animal-like forms, which are sometimes used as pets or beasts of labour. When the Qu leave these planets behind, however, some of these post-humans re-develop sentience, and create a new empire in the process.
  • Very common in Arabian Nights, where it is typically employed by sorceresses who are either hit upon by men they do not like, or for the purposes of punishing an erstwhile lover they are tired of.
    • Example of both kinds are found in the story of "King Beder". King Beder is first turned into a bird by Princess Giauhara when he tries to kiss her hand. He is later rescued by another benevolent sorceress queen, but then reaches the city of the formidable Queen Labe. She is so much into this trope that the first thing Beder notices on entering her kingdom is the abnormally large number of donkeys, mules and horses on the streets, who, he later learns, were all her former human lovers whom she had transformed into animals after she tired of them. Beder himself escapes her clutches when he first meets her, by transforming her into a mule with assistance from a magician friend. However, Labe is rescued by her mother, and quickly has her revenge by changing Beder into a "foul bird".
    • Another extreme example is found in the "Tale of the Young King of the Black Isles", where the king in the title is transformed into a living sculpture—he is stone from neck downwards—by his adulterous wife as punishment for harming her lover. The queen is not content with merely transforming the king her husband, and goes ahead and makes a display of her magical powers to him by transforming all the inhabitants of his kingdom into fish, color coded by their religion. This whole transfiguration explosion is later discovered when a fisherman tries to catch these fish and finds them to be rather unusually jumpy.
    • Taken to an extreme in the story of "The Merchant and The Djinn" — the titular merchant finds himself having incurred the murderous wrath of the titular Djinn, but is saved at the last moment by the intervention of three completely unrelated travelers who happened to be in that stretch of desert at the time, all of whom are carting around various animals that all happen to be their wives/brothers/relatives who have had bad/foolish experiences with magic and were put under a spell—in something of a parody of this idea. What follows are various stories within stories explaining how each of them suffered this fate, and The Djinn is so amazed by having heard them that he agrees to let the merchant go in exchange for the experience.
  • Beasts and Beauty: Dangerous Tales: In "Cinderella", Magdalena is transformed into a mouse by the witch Princess Inez to keep her from getting in the way of Inez marrying Prince Dante.
  • In Bedknob and Broomstick, Miss Price briefly turns Charles into a frog to prove her bona fides as a witch.
  • In The Belgariad, Polgara uses this twice during the course of the series. She permanently transforms Queen Salmissra into a huge serpent in the original books. (Salmissra comes to appreciate the benefits of the change, and does not want to be returned to her previous form). In the prequel Polgara The Sorceress, she temporarily transforms one of the Cherek kings into a man-sized frog because she thinks a regular Dope Slap won't be enough to get the message across.
    • In Belgarath's prequel, Belgarath The Sorcerer, after sobering up from his grief-induced alcoholism, he ends up wandering the Western kingdoms and objects quite firmly to the actions of an Arendish lord. Who makes the mistake of talking down to him. Belgarath promptly, if temporarily, turns him into a pig, and later notes that this was a rather petty and inappropriate use of his abilities.
    • Mentioned in The Malloreon, when Beldin and Belgarath are talking to a sorcerer who hasn't learned the rules. Beldin discourages it (specifically the frog version), on the grounds that frogs multiply very quickly and having one annoying person is less tiresome than having a hundred aggravating frogs.
  • In Patricia A. McKillip's The Bell at Sealey Head, it turns out that the bell is the enchanted Queen Hydria, and the crows her enchanted knights.
  • At the end of the first chapter of Birthright (2017), the protagonist is transformed into a dragon. Not an enormous, fire-breathing dragon mind you, but a tiny, harmless whelp. This kicks off the plot, forcing the protagonist to find a way to reverse the transformation without the villain finding out.
  • In The Black Company, resident wizard One-Eye's favorite threat is to turn people into toads, but he's never shown actually doing it. This leads more than one of his companions to believe that he doesn't actually possess the ability to do so.
  • In The Black Spider, Christine is turned into a huge, demonic black spider when she tries to renege on a deal with the devil.
  • The Black Swan: Odette and the rest of the flock turn into swans due to a spell cast by Baron von Rothbard, in contrast to the voluntary shapeshifting of Von Rothbard and Odile.
  • The second book in Betsy Hanes' Bone Chillers series of children's horror novels, Little Pet Shop of Horrors, dealt with a girl who was transformed into a dog, to be sold by a pet shop. Unlike some fictional transformations, her clothes don't come along for the ride, which creates some momentary awkwardness when she regains her true form.
  • Bruce Coville's Book of...:
    • Bruce Coville's Book of Nightmares: Cai is turned into a slug and later a toad after angering Merlin in Master of the Hunt.
    • Bruce Coville's Book of Magic: Horsing Around has the protagonist insult a witch and get turned into a centaur (she was trying to turn him into a horse, but his friend interrupted the spell).
    • Bruce Coville's Book of Magic II:
      • The Wooden City features all of its people being turned into wooden statues (and later animated somewhat to serve as slaves) by an evil wizard.
      • Vernan's Dragon has the titular dragon being a transformed mortal woman.
  • In Castle Hangnail, there's a running gag about Molly wishing she knew a spell for turning people into earwigs when they need to be taught a lesson. At the end of the book, the minions find one and present it to her as a token of their appreciation.
  • In The Cats Of Tanglewood Forest (and the children's picture book it's based on, A Circle Of Cats), the titular cats do this as a way of saving the main character, Lillian Kindred, who had been bitten by a snake, so they turn her into something that's not dying, a kitten. As soon as Lillian wakes up, she sets off to get the spell reversed (as she prefers to be a girl), only the cats are in hiding now as their leader, The Father of Cats, disapproves of them using their magic in such a way.
  • In Charlie and the Chocolate Factory, Violet Beauregarde's karmic fate is a transformation into a giant blueberry, with only her head, hands, and feet showing that she was once human. (This is played up in the 2005 film and 2013 stage musical adaptations, in which her parent figure in each has Skewed Priorities with regards to their concerns for her—in the former, it's that she won't be able to "compete", and the latter, that she can't be a starlet in this form.) At the end of the novel, after all the juice is squeezed out of her, she's Not Quite Back to Normal, as her skin and hair are still blue.
  • The Chronicles of Narnia:
    • Mr. Tumnus fears a variation of this that would've affected only one part of his body (he is a faun): one of the punishments he thinks the White Witch might try on him if she finds out he betrayed her was turning his cloven hooves into horse-like hooves. This isn't how the witch ends up punishing him; she instead goes for a different transformation trope altogether.
    • Rabadash, the Calormene prince, gets temporarily turned into a donkey, and is warned that it will happen again if he moves more than 10 miles away from the temple of Tashbaan.
    • Subverted (unintentionally?) with Eustace Scrubb, who gets turned into a dragon as a punishment. While being a dragon seems awesome, he couldn't talk (and could barely write), couldn't fit on the boat to continue the group's quest (so would have had to spend the rest of his life alone on the island), and was wearing an armlet that was perfectly-sized for his human form but was digging into his foreleg and causing him constant pain as a dragon. And it has the intended result as well, turning him into a much better person in the end.
    • There's also the unpleasant schoolchildren towards the end of Prince Caspian, who get turned into pigs.
  • In The Chronicles of Prydain, Morda inflicts this in Taran Wanderer. Taran resists because he is (unknowingly) carrying Morda's Soul Jar.
  • In Robert E. Howard's "The Tower of the Elephant", Conan the Barbarian remembers that Yara was said to have used a gem to turn a prince into a spider before stepping on him. Not that that will stop him from trying to rob him.
  • The Curse Workers: In the first book, the titular White Cat turns out to be the protagonist's missing, presumed-dead childhood friend Lila. It turns out that he has the rare power of transformation, which his crime family used for assassinations, messing with his head in the process so he wouldn't remember, and he turned her into a cat instead of killing her by turning her into an inanimate object. He turns her back after he figures out what's going on.
  • In Devon Monk's Dead Iron, Cedar's brother Wil was permanently turned into a wolf—with, fortunately, his own mind—as opposed to Cedar's Involuntary Shapeshifter.
  • Discworld:
    • In the novels, it's stated that Granny Weatherwax doesn't do this. Instead, she prefers to make people think they're frogs, which takes much less magic, is slightly less cruel, and is a lot more entertaining. The Discworld does, however, contain a few instances of turning people into animals and lots of threatening to turn people into animals. Thanks to Morphic Resonance (things generally prefer to stay their natural shape and a) will fight like hell to stay that way, b) eventually snap back), they usually, but not always, get better.
    • In Lords and Ladies, Ridcully uses Stacklady's Morphic Resonator to turn a bandit chief into a pumpkin. In accordance with the universal laws of humour, it's still wearing his hat.
    • He also turns a particularly annoying complainer into a frog, albeit briefly, in Soul Music.
    • Going Postal: When one of the crooked bankers threatens to sue Unseen University in a heated moment, Ridcully retorts, "Oh, PLEASE sue the University! We've got PONDS full of people who tried to sue the University!"
    • In Sourcery, a University wizard in service to Coin the Sourcerer transforms Lord Vetinari into a small lizard, one of the few times anyone's gotten the better of him.
    • In Witches Abroad, Lilith, the quintessential "good witch" gone bad, revisits the Cinderella tale by turning animals into humans and vice versa. When upset at some coachmen getting drunk, she turns them into cockroaches — and steps on them.
    • The Librarian of Unseen University is a subversion: he's accidentally turned into an orangutan near the beginning of The Light Fantastic, but he prefers it so much (it's easier to fetch books from on high, for example) he refuses to be transformed back. Also, he's pretty much the one person in Ankh-Morpork that no one wants to pick a bar-fight with as he can punch out trolls. His morphic field seems to have been permanently affected, as any other time he's transformed, he retains his red-orange orangutan fur. In later novels, his orangutan strength helps save the day.
    • In Equal Rites, one silly boy is turned into the "more fitting" form of a piglet.
    • In A Hat Full of Sky, Tiffany Aching temporarily gains the ability to transform an arrogant would-be wizard into a frog, though her magic isn't yet powerful enough to violate the conservation of mass, thus necessitating making a giant magical bubble of all the leftover matter from his body next to the frog, which is more horrifying in many ways than the frog-transformation itself.
    • The Tiffany books also have the Toad, who was once a lawyer who tried to represent a girl in a Frivolous Lawsuit on a fairy godmother. It was the judge applauding that really got to him, though.
  • The Divine Comedy:
    • In the seventh circle of Hell, those who commit suicide are transformed into trees, unable to speak or scream unless their branches are broken, making them bleed.
    • In the seventh Bolgia in the eighth circle of Hell, thieves are transformed into snakes. To regain their human form, they have to attack and bite their fellow damned (thus stealing their human forms), only to be transformed again when they themselves are bitten again by the snakes.
  • In Dogsbody the protagonist, Sirius, a star-denizen, is falsely accused of murder, and is sentenced to reincarnation into the earthbound body of a dog and retrieve the Zoi, a powerful weapon, on Earth. Near the end of the story, after he retrieves the weapon and becomes a star again, he later regrets his choice and wishes to have stayed as a dog with his human caretaker, a little girl named Kathleen, who loved and took care of him in the time he had been a dog on Earth and also had made him realize the importance of caring for others and learning to love those in need of compassion, in comparsion to the selfish and ill-tempered being he was in the beginning before he was turned into a dog.
  • In the Dragaera series, this is Sethra Lavode's favorite method of dealing with obnoxious Dzur heroes. Also, in a Monty Python and the Holy Grail Shout-Out: "She'll turn you into a newt." "I'll get better."
  • The Dragon Hoard:
    • The protagonist, Jasleth, is cursed to turn into a raven for one hour a day — and it's a different hour every day, at random, so he never knows when it's about to happen until it does.
    • A Story Within a Story about a kidnapped princess features several instances, including a magic ointment that turns people into insects, and an animal that's really a cursed prince (as well as an animal that claims to be really a cursed prince but turns out to have just been fooling).
  • At the climax of Dragon Pearl, the ghosts of Jun's team turn Captain Hwan (a supernatural tiger who can take on human form) into a normal tiger in revenge for getting them killed.
  • In Andre Norton's Dread Companion, Kilda finds that eating the food of the land slowly turns her toward a creature of it, and Oomart too. Fortunately, she has human food, which can turn you back.
  • The Dresden Files not only consciously avoids using this trope, but the author has actually come up with a plausible reason why most "good" wizards have outlawed the practice. More generally, there are far more efficient ways to kill people. However, it does happen, albeit usually at the hands of supernatural creatures:
    • Harry spends most of the first few books avoiding the Nevernever as his literal Faerie Godmother, who has Blue-and-Orange Morality on a good day, is yearning to turn him into one of her dogs to resolve an unsettled debt between the two of them. When he later challenges her on this, as his mother's deal with her was designed to protect him, she points out that he would have been entirely safe, and happy, as one of her hounds, and more so than he usually is. This isn't even weaselling out of the deal - she means it.
    • The hounds of the Wild Hunt are revealed to be humans or similar beings under transformative shadow-masks, and change back when they die. How deep the transformation goes is unclear, but it's implied to be pretty deep.
    • Per Word of God, the red cardinal frozen in Mab's garden on the roof of Arctis Tor? That's Cardinal Richelieu.
  • Ursula K. Le Guin's Earthsea series makes a spell to shift another person involuntarily rather difficult, and making shifting yourself perfectly easy, but running a very real risk of forgetting how... and why... to shift out of the other form.
  • In Ella Enchanted, Lucinda, a fairy of the gift-bestowing kind, doesn't think through the consequences of her 'gifts'. One of her favourites is turning people into squirrels, and she believes she's doing them a favour until she spends a week as a squirrel herself.
  • The Elminster Series: In Making of a Mage, Elminster turns three magelords into stones whom he puts in an ocean, saying he hopes they have large and strong lungs to swim ashore when the spell wears off.
  • In Alethea Kontis's Enchanted, in the Back Story, Jack Jr. was turned into a dog.
  • Patricia C. Wrede's Enchanted Forest Chronicles:
    • Dealing With Dragons features a spontaneous example when Woraug turns into a toad, having lost the privilege of being a dragon by not acting dragon-like enough.
    • In the later books, it's mentioned that there are countless ways a careless person could be cursed and turned into a flower or animal or rock or something in the Enchanted Forest. When Mendabar and Cimorene are clearing out a meadow, they find and disenchant several kings and princesses. In Calling on Dragons, Cimorene mentions how you have to be careful in the Enchanted Forest, because you could sit or walk on someone important without knowing it. And while it's more of a spell transfer than an actual transformation, we also get the annoying fellow with the long name getting turned into a sky blue, twelve-foot-tall donkey, floating above the ground and with giant wings.
  • The Faerie Queene Book II: The knights that give in to Acrasia's advances and abandon all reason to lust are gradually transformed into wild animals fueled only by the base passions they succumbed to. The story is clearly borrowing from the episode in The Odyssey where Circe turns men into pigs, but the difference is that the men here are complicit in the process that turns them into animals.
  • In Falling Sideways many, many characters get turned into frogs. Or made to think they're frogs. Or made to seem like frogs to others. Or various combinations. Sometimes frogs get turned into people, which, for the powerful, super-intelligent alien frogs in the story actually pretty much counts as this trope. There's a lot of frogs.
  • Drawing from its inspirations of folklore, The Folk of the Air has faeries who aren't adverse to cursing humans into unwanted forms. One common fae transforms Heather into a human-cat hybrid merely becuase he noticed her staring at his own feline ears.
  • Forgotten Realms: The actual D&D spell has a notable use in R.A. Salvatore's Exile. As noted under Tabletop Games, the spell gradually takes over the object's mind, which in story terms makes for all kinds of tragedy.
  • The Franny K. Stein book The Fran With Four Brains had Franny's dog Igor turned into a tuna fish sandwich by the third Franbot's Food-Ray Blaster. The Franbots also planned to do the same to Franny, her family and the rest of humanity.
  • In The Girl from the Miracles District, the "hiccups" - surges of black magic from the ley lines - can sometimes hit a person unexpectedly, turning them into some manner of a mindless beast. As far as everyone knows, it's impossible to reverse the process.
  • This is the plot of Apuleius's The Golden Ass from c. 150 CE, one of the earliest surviving novels.
  • In Henry Kuttner and C. L. Moore's "A Gnome There Was" Tim is transformed into a gnome because the first gnome emperor decided that if fairies could have changelings, his people should be able to replenish their population in a similar manner. Since gnomes are supposedly immortal, this makes little sense to Tim until it's revealed that the various emperors are fond of transforming their enemies into beings other than gnomes.
  • More than a few Goosebumps books had this as a problem the kid-protagonist had to face, caused either through magic or technology.
  • This happens a number of times in Harry Potter, usually played for laughs. Justified in that one of the classes is Transfiguration, and a lot of students have bad aim. One example is Draco Malfoy, the Amazing Bouncing Ferret, in Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire. "Quidditch Through the Ages" also mentions that after one early match, they had to specifically come up with a rule prohibiting Transfiguring the Keeper into a polecat, although given that the use of several weapons and releasing a swarm of vampire bats were also banned after that match, whether this was intended to prevent the enemy from remaining on their broom or to increase their own team's ability to drop on other players and savage them remains a mystery for the ages.
    • A Maledictus is a female with a blood curse, which would eventually and permanently turn her into a beast. The curse is hereditary from mother to daughter. In the spinoff Fantastic Beasts: The Crimes of Grindelwald, Lord Voldemort's pet snake, Nagini, is revealed to have formerly been a freak show performer. Although Curse of Nagini was trademarked as a potential title for the last book while it was being written, suggesting it was originally supposed to be introduced then but was cut for whatever reason.
  • The Hollows: In the first book, Dead Witch Walking, the Big Bad transforms Rachel into a mink and keeps her as a pet for a time.
  • How the Marquis Got His Coat Back: Lady Drusilla of the Raven's Court has a habit of turning people who upset her into birds of prey.
  • I Am Mordred: Merlin was transformed into a hawk by Nyneve, then caged. He kills her when he's freed.
  • The Harlan Ellison short story "I Have No Mouth, and I Must Scream". The title really gives it away.
  • The Infernal Devices: In The Clockwork Princess, Benedict Lightwood is gradually driven mad and finally turned into a gigantic serpent-like demon as a result of the demon pox.
  • In the J.W. Wells & Co. trilogy, the standard punishment for betraying the firm is being turned into office supplies. You retain some measure of sapience.
  • In Alan Dean Foster's Kingdoms of Light, the Six-Man Band consists of a mage's pets (three cats, a dog, a snake, and a canary), turned into humans by the mage's dying spell. In the end, they are captured by the evil Munderucu and turned back into animals—except that due to character growth, they not only remained sentient, but they became great cats, a huge wolf, a 40-foot python, and a firebird. Oops.
  • In The Kingston Cycle by C.L. Polk, one of the punishments the Grand Duchess of The Fair Folk can mete out is to be transformed into a Horse of a Different Color and put to work, though at least the sentence isn't indefinite. She inflicts this on her Treacherous Advisor when his crimes are exposed.
  • In the short story "Lady Into Fox", a dainty elegant woman is turned into a talking fox, and very gradually becomes one mentally. The woman who always wore napkins and fancy etiquette, was now eating live rabbits in the living room. It was never explained why she transformed. But it's assumed that some karmic celestial intervention or God himself was punishing her husband for being a fox hunter.
  • This is basically the whole premise of Lady: My Life as a Bitch, with the title character (among others) getting accidentally turned into a dog by a tramp.
  • The Land of Green Ginger: When the Magician created the eponymous flying Land, a glitch in the final enchantment turned him into a Button-Nosed Tortoise, and he can neither change back nor control his creation. Prince Abu Ali, the novel's hero, is destined to save him.
  • Land of Oz: This happens at least once in almost every Oz book. Villains such as Ms. Yoop the Yookoohoo and the Nome King have been known to do this. The Magic Belt that the Nome King used to transform anyone into whatever object he chooses was taken by Dorothy and Princess Ozma and comes into use in many future books.
  • Froggy from The Land of Stories is a human that turned into a large frog by a wish. He's actually the missing Charming prince, and is briefly returned to his human form, but later discovers he's actually better off as a frog, and decides to stay as one.
  • In Little, Big: or, The Fairies' Parliament, Mrs. Underhill, a powerful faerie, has a stork who works for her, and who is hoping to be returned to the form of a woman after putting in enough years of service. However, the tables are cruelly turned when the stork learns she was always a stork; the process of being turned into a human wizard's Soul Jar messed with her memories, and the human wizard's soul actually coming to reside in her causes an even bigger identity crisis.
  • This happens in The Long Dark Teatime Of The Soul, where the Thor's fits of rage always cause the unwilling transformation of some hapless bystander or object. In the course of the novel this befalls an airport ticket agent (who ends up transformed into a vending machine), a lamp (turned into a cat) and a jet fighter which turns into a short-tempered eagle, with the RAF rings still faintly visible on its wings.
  • Discussed in The Lord of the Rings. Characters believe that the wizard Gandalf might turn Sam into a newt, or Mr. Butterbur in stopping them in their tracks, as the change generally takes 15+ minutes.
    • In The Magic of Oz, a young boy learns to use a very dangerous magic word ("Pyrzqxgl", hard to use because very few can pronounce it) which can turn anything into anything. He learns to pronounce it, and becomes an Unwitting Pawn of the villainous Nome King, who convinces him to use it to wreck havoc in Oz. Naturally, Ozma's protectors try to stop him, until in one scene, he panics and says it dozens of times, transforming nearly the entire cast into various animals—including the Nome King too, who makes the mistake of making him angry. Eventually, the Wizard himself is able to use the word and turn it against them, then trick them into drinking the Water of Oblivion to make them forget the word and return them to a "blank slate". (Which, in the Nome King's case, only stops his evil ways for a short time...)
  • In The Magic Finger by Roald Dahl, this is the main character's special ability, although it so horrifies her that she never uses it unless she's really annoyed with someone.
  • In The Magicians, Brakebills students entering their fourth year are transformed into geese, but for a strictly practical reason: fourth year takes place at Brakebills' southern campus - in Antarctica - and having the students instinctively fly there is the most economic means of transportation.
  • Max & the Midknights: Max's uncle Budrick spends a large part of the book as a goose, which is meant to be his disguise since he was the most wanted man in Byjovia.
  • This trope is the binding theme of Ovid's Metamorphoses.
  • The Metamorphosis: In this novelette by Franz Kafka, salesman Gregor Samsa wakes up one day to find himself inexplicably transformed into a gigantic cockroach-like insect. The story details how he and his family try and cope with this, seeing as Gregor was the breadwinner.
  • In Mogworld, there's a bunny morph spell that Jim eventually buys. According to Jim, "It's a combat control strategy that also happens to be incredibly hilarious." It gets deconstructed when he explains that polymorphed rabbits are indestructible, because if you can turn any foe regardless of size, into a small harmless rabbit and instantly kill it there, then there would be no point in buying any other spells.
  • Moongobble and Me:
    • Moongobble's spells have a tendency to go wrong and forcibly, albeit accidentally on his part, turn people and things into cheese (including himself). Book 4 also sees him accidentally turn his toad companion Urk into a miniature cat, to Urk's great distress (fortunately, he gets better by the end of the book).
    • In book 5, Snelly the Mischief Monster opens a box that turns her into a beautiful woman... much to her horror, since her species likes being ugly. She's restored to normal when the Dangly-Boo eats the curse magic.
  • Murderess features a race of people known as the Moonfolk, or Lavricenote . They are infertile, and one becomes one of them by transforming under very specific conditions, and itís implied that itís not a good thing. Lu almost becomes one herself before ĎHat Ladí points it out to her.
  • In The Necklace Of Princess Fiorimonde, the titular necklace is cursed so that whoever touches the cord will be turned into a beautiful bead.
  • In Nevers, it is revealed the Latin-speaking donkey is really a duke cursed by a duchess he spurned (a case of Incompatible Orientation), who can return to human form only if his relative bathes him in the oldest spring in town and picks someone else to transfer the curse to. The heroine Odette learns she is related to the Duke via her late father, and she decides to give the curse to the local kook who longs to be a chicken.
  • In No Such Thing as a Witch, Nora and Todd find out that if four pieces of their neighbor's magic fudge are eaten together, it can turn you into whatever animal you're thinking of at the time. The first time this happens, it's to Todd and no one was expecting it. Towards the end of the book, Nora deliberately uses it to turn herself into a mouse to sneak into the neighbor's apartment. Todd also turns into a cat a few more times, with one of those times being nearly in front of a health inspector!
  • October Daye: The first book, Rosemary and Rue, begins with Toby being turned into a fish by the kidnappers she was tracking, and left in a koi pond at the Golden Gate Park Japanese Garden. It takes fourteen years for the spell to wear off.
  • Circe appears in Percy Jackson and the Olympians, turning men into guinea pigs. (They're less difficult to keep than actual pigs).
  • Ironically enough the novel Polymorph, which is about a literal "baleful polymorph" (e.g. an evil creature which can assume any form) contains no examples of this trope, since it cannot transform others.
  • In one Rainbow Magic book, some goblins get turned into goldfish.
  • Carla's transformation forms half the climax for part one of The Red and the Rest.
  • Retired Witches Mysteries:
    • At age five, Molly accidentally turned Olivia into a spider. The latter was not happy, since spiders terrify her.
    • In book 2, Dorothy accidentally turns Brian into a cardboard cutout.
    • In book 3, Dorothy gets angry and deliberately changes Cassandra Black into a snake.
  • In the Rogue Agent series, Reg has been a bird for centuries when previously, she was the human Queen of Lalapinda. She can't use any of the magical powers she possessed but she can still sense it in a big way.
  • In Sabina Kane: Red-Headed Stepchild the untrained Sabina Kane attempts to cast a spell to banish the demon Giguhl back to his home plane, and accidentally traps him in the form of a hairless cat instead.
  • The Saga of Hrolf Kraki: Prince Bjorn is cursed by his sorcerous Wicked Stepmother to transform into a bear.
  • After Saladin Chamcha miraculously survives a plane crash in The Satanic Verses , he starts turning into an incarnation of the devil, growing horns and cloven hooves. In the course of several weeks, he becomes (to his dismay) increasingly devil-like, eventually turning into an eight-foot tall devil with glowing eyes and smoke coming from his nostrils, before turning back to normal. During a stay in the hospital, he also encounters patients who are slowly turning into animals and inanimate objects.
  • Scholarly Magics series:
    • In A College of Magics, people who cross Menary Paganell have a tendency to wind up as animals.
    • In A Scholar of Magics, turning people into animals is the function of the secret weapon being developed by the Agincourt Project.
  • Schooled in Magic: Changing someone into an animal is commonly used as a prank by the Whitehall students. Later Emily encounters a much nastier version, in which a murderer is turned into a boar as punishment and hunted to his death.
  • Secret Histories: Wild witch Molly Metcalf admits to once turning a fox hunting party into foxes for a day, feeling it would give the hunters some perspective.
  • In Josepha Sherman's The Shining Falcon, Finist finds that a wolf really is a transformed man. His girlfriend, angry with him, hadn't really expected it to work.
  • Split Heirs: Clootie and Wulfrith learn how to turn different animals into each other, with the former also planning on using this against the Gorgarians. Later Clootie ends up transforming multiple people while fending them off. However, he can't predict what anything will turn into and can't reverse it either.
  • Neil Gaiman's Stardust:
    • A witch turns Tristran into a dormouse to carry him in her cart. In the novel, it's made clear that this isn't actually meant as a curse; it's done for practicality: Tristan takes up a lot less room this way after him arranging for food, bedding and travel. It's also implied that the spell turns you into the animal you are most like. The witch also turns Tristran back once she's given him a ride. She does find it amusing though.
    • The witch earlier turned Tristran's mother into a bird as a punishment.
  • The Stormlight Archive features Soulcasting, courtesy of either a specific kind of artifact, or one of the two kinds of Surgebinding magic that have access to the ability. It's generally used to turn objects into other objects, such as rocks into food, wood into metal (handy for trade with a culture that has great reverence for stone and views mining as horrible blasphemy), or reshaping stone to make buildings. It can also be used on people, to horrifyingly lethal effect.
    • Those who frequently use the artifacts to soulcast suffer a drawback in the form of savanthood. Their flesh slowly turns into the material that they use most for soulcasting. Over the course of the series so far we have seen people turning into various substances including rock and crystal, vines, and smoke.
  • In the infamous children's book Sylvester and the Magic Pebble, Sylvester accidentally makes a wish with the pebble that turns him into a rock.
  • Talion: Revenant: Chi'gander specialized in this, subjecting people to horrific transformations and extorting them for reversing them. Later he also shrinks Weylan's body to child size too, but that was apparently simply for fun.
  • Time Out Of Time: Balor often has a tendency to turn people into animals that he keeps locked in cages.
  • Hundreds of victims of this effect make up the supporting case of Too Many Curses. They're all very much disappointed when the death of the wizard who transformed them fails to negate this trope.
  • Tortall Universe: In the second book of the Immortals quartet, Numair manages to change Book Two Final Boss Tristan Staghorn into an apple tree, which is treated as a near-impossible feat, and due to the nature of magic in the world caused a tree somewhere to turn into a very confused man.
  • The Tough Guide to Fantasyland:
    TRANSFORMATION has been defined as "inflicted metamorphosis" and is quite as uncomfortable as it sounds. Someone has, without asking you, turned you into a carthorse or a table with bendy legs. It usually takes a WIZARD to remove you from this discomfort.
  • The Toymaker's Apprentice:
    • Christian comes to Nuremberg and recruits his cousin Stefan into his quest to find the krakatook, which he needs to cure Princess Pirlipat of Boldavia, who's been turned into a doll against her will by the venomous bite of the mouse king.
    • After Stefan cures Princess Pirlipat and the mice storm the throne room, the mouse queen bites Stefan, which turns him into a doll too.
  • Treasure at the Heart of the Tanglewood is a bit confusing regarding this trope. It's made clear early on that there's something off about the knights who seek the Tanglewood's treasure, and it's eventually revealed that they're all animals, turned human by a sorceress and forced to serve her. Only that's a lie: they were humans the villain turned into animals, and the sorceress turned them human again, and then the villain turned them into animals again.
  • The Troll's Daughter: The troll turns his servant into three different creatures (a hare, a bird, and a fish) after giving him permission to take a break for a while. The transformed boy spends a lot of time running because the troll has enchanted and caged up all the rest of the creatures. However, the third transformation backfires on him when the boy-turned-fish ends up finding and falling in love with the troll's daughter.
  • In Susan Dexter's The True Knight, the queen's only son was turned to a swan. Wren and her master were forcibly recruited to retrieve him.
  • Villains by Necessity: It's implied that Blackmail's horse is actually his brother, transformed into a horse by Mizzamir.
  • Wayside School: A non-animal example occurs in Sideways Stories from Wayside School in which Mrs. Gorf transforms her students into apples.
  • In E. D. Baker's The Wide-Awake Princess, a witch tries to turn Annie into a beetle. Annie's immunity to magic causes it to backfire on the witch.
  • In one early short story from The Witcher saga by Andrzej Sapkowski, a young knight named Duny is under a spell that turns him into a giant hedgehog by day, and Geralt helps him remove it—the whole story is a rather gleeful deconstruction of the classic "Beauty and the Beast" plot. Of course, Duny is a Nilfgaardian prince who later went on to become The Emperor Emhyr var Emreis, so it's a hell of a Chekhov's Gun...
    • In another short story, it is said that Geralt lifted a curse from a baron who had been transformed into a cormorant.
  • In The Witches, the titular Child Hating Mage Species is fond of this:
    • Their plan to dispose of a huge number of children is to turn them all into mice with a time-release potion. They transform the protagonist, who steals the formula and uses it to get them all Hoist by Their Own Petard.
    • The protagonist's grandmother mentions a little girl that a witch transformed into a hen, which her parents kept. In a moment of Gallows Humour, the grandmother admits that the hen produced the tastiest eggs she's ever eaten.
  • The Witches of Eileanan: It turns out that Maya the Ensorcellor has this ability due to being half-Fairge. Among her victims are the Rìgh's brothers, turned into blackbirds with Lachlan the only survivor; Tabithas Wolf-Runner, turned into, fittingly enough, a wolf; Khan'gharad, turned into a horse; and Khan'tirell, turned into a toad.
  • The Worst Witch: At the end of the first book, Mildred catches a gang of hostile witches unawares and turns them into snails.
  • "Evil" Magician Trent of the Xanth series can transform anything into anything. When he was ousted, rumors spread that he turned his enemies into fish and left them to suffocate on dry land. Trent explains that he did turn some into fish but only in rivers or other bodies of water.

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