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Literature / Fade

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The more recent cover art.

Fade is a novel written by Franco-American horror novelist Robert Cormier, and was published in 1988. It tells the story of Paul Moreaux, a teenager in 1938 who has recently discovered he has the power to turn invisible at will, a power he calls "The Fade". Despite the cautions of his uncle Adélard, also a Fader, Paul puts his power to use eavesdropping. This power ends up bringing more trouble than he bargained for, as he witnesses horrible truth after horrible truth.


This book provides examples of:

  • Black Sheep: Adélard is considered the black sheep by his siblings.
  • Cool Uncle: Paul sees Adélard this way
  • Cynicism Catalyst: Adélard's current way of life as a wanderer started immediately after his brother Vincent's death.
  • Didn't See That Coming: Paul witnesses several shocking things while using the Fade for banal reasons.
  • Incest Is Relative: Presented as a recurring theme in various incarnations, notably with Paul's crush on his Aunt Rosanna.
  • Massive Numbered Siblings: As was the norm for most French Canadian families at the time, Paul has many siblings.
  • Power Degeneration: The Fade eats away at the Fader's life force.
  • Sexual Extortion: Paul is horrified to discover this has been going on thanks to the Fade.
  • Super Powerful Genetics: The Fade is passed down from Uncle to nephew, with Paul inheriting it from Adélard.
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  • Twincest: Paul witnesses this while using the Fade to watch a girl undress.
  • With Great Power Comes Great Insanity: For Ozzie, Paul's nephew who also inherited the Fade.


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