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  • Cassandra Clare loves Reveals. Almost every book she writes has more than one:
    • City of Bones:
      • Clary is a Shadowhunter.
      • Jocelyn was married to Valentine.
      • Alec is gay.
      • The Mortal Cup was hidden in a playing card in Dorothy's apartment.
      • Alec is in love with Jace.
      • Hodge was a traitor to the Clave.
      • Luke is a werewolf.
      • Valentine is Clary's father.
      • Valentine is Jace's father, making Clary and Jace siblings.
    • City of Ashes:
      • Alec and Magnus are in a relationship.
      • The Inquisitor had hid a tracking device in Jace's shard of the mirror.
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    • City of Glass:
      • Sebastian Verlac was someone else in disguise.
      • Sam was actually Hodge.
      • The Mortal Glass was actually Lake Lyn.
      • Clary and Jace are part angel.
      • A bunch of reveals come all at once: Jace isn't Clary's brother, Sebastian/Jonathan is, Jace is part of the Herondale family, Valentine is Sebastian/Jonathan's father, not Jace's, and Jonathan was disguising as Sebastian.
      • Simon can walk in daylight because he drank angel blood.
      • One of the high-ranking clave members was a traitor to Valentine.
    • City of Fallen Angels:
      • Kyle is actually Jordan, and he's a werewolf.
      • Camille was working for Lilith the entire time.
    • Clockwork Angel:
    • Clockwork Prince:
      • Will has a curse on him that kills everyone who loves him.
      • Jessamine was meeting Nathaniel at night and is a spy for the Magister.
      • (A comedic example) Demon Pox is real.
      • Will doesn't have a curse on him that kills everyone who loves him.
      • Charlotte is pregnant.
  • Brandon Sanderson is almost guaranteed to drop a Reveal late in the book that turns the plot on its head, dramatically reinterprets some aspect of the magic system, or both (usually some secret of magic that knocks the plot sideways).
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    • Mistborn The Final Empire:
      • Shan Elariel is a Mistborn and wants to kill Elend.
      • Kelsier's real plan was to allow himself to die to make himself a messiah and to have OreSeur impersonate him after his death to inspire people to fight.
      • The Eleventh Metal is not a powerful metal, but it lets you look at alternate timeline versions of other people.
      • The Lord Ruler is not Alendi, but is in fact his packman Rashek.
      • Marsh didn't die, but instead became a Steel Inquisitor with the intent of destroying the Inquisitors from the inside.
      • Vin can use the Mist to power up her Allomancy.
    • The Well of Ascension:
      • Zane is Elend's brother.
      • Cett is genuinely crippled, and he has no Allomancers.
      • The mists are the Deepness.
      • OreSeur isn't OreSeur, but is actually TenSoon, in a contract with Zane instead of Vin.
      • Zane is not insane, but in fact actually had someone speaking in his mind and manipulating him.
      • The Well of Ascension is in Luthadel, not the Terris highlands, because the Lord Ruler moved it.
      • Vin is able to control the koloss by pushing on them with emotional Allomancy enhanced by Duralumin
      • Tindwyl was killed in the battle with the koloss.
      • Vin is the Hero of Ages.
      • Marsh is being controlled by something.
      • Elend becomes a Mistborn.
      • The Terris prophecies were manipulated and changed for years for the sake of releasing the Big Bad.
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    • The Hero of Ages:
      • There is a third power system called Hemalurgy.
      • Koloss used to be people who were transformed by a specific use of Hemalurgy.
      • The voice of Reen that Vin heard was actually Ruin manipulating her the whole time.
      • Beldre is an Allomancer, not Quellion.
      • Both Spook and Quellion have Hemalurgic spikes inside of them, and Ruin was manipulating them both by appearing to be Kelsier.
      • The First Generation kandra are the Lord Ruler's Terris companions.
      • The Pits of Hathsin are where the kandra live.
      • The mists weren't trying to kill people, they were trying to Snap Allomancers who hadn't been Snapped yet.
      • Atium is Ruin's body, and the kandra have the Lord Ruler's stash of it.
      • Vin's earring was a Hemalurgic spike tying her to Ruin, and removing it is what allows her to use the Mists to strengthen herself.
      • Vin absorbing all of the Mist turns her into a vessel of Preservation.
      • Vin isn't the true Hero of Ages, Sazed is.
    • Warbreaker features a plot with multiple different parties trying to prepare for, cause and prevent a full scale war. While there are a number of different theories from the different POV characters, the mastermind is the head scribe Bluefingers, who is actually the agent of a smaller subjugated nation that most of the main characters pay no attention to. He misleads virtually everyone to cause a war to give his homeland a chance for freedom.
    • The Reckoners Trilogy features a number of reveals per book about the nature of Epic's and their powers, weaknesses and origins, not to mention considerable information being revealed about the main characters as the books progress.

  • 20,000 Leagues Under the Sea:
  • In An Abundance of Katherines, Colin has dated 19 different girls named Katherine, all of whom have dumped him, and communicates these relationships to the reader through flashbacks. Katherine Carter, aka Katherine XIX, was with him for almost a year and broke his heart. When he was 8, a little girl named Katherine asked him to be her boyfriend; he said yes, fell in love, and got dumped 2½ minutes later. Then Colin is asked out by the most popular girl in school, who is named Marie, not Katherine, and is finally going to break his streak... but then he sees Katherine I, Katherine the Great, and ends up ditching the date. "And so it was Colin and Katherine Carter snuck out of the house to have a cup of coffee at Cafe Sel Marie."
    • Then the book does it again — Colin is determined to figure out why Katherines keep dumping him, and he works out a theorem of relationship graphs, and it works for eighteen of the Katherines. But the graph says that he dumped Katherine III. So finally he calls her back and tries to figure out what happened... guess who did the dumping after all.
  • In Adaptation. by Malinda Lo, it's revealed that aliens have been visiting Earth, Reese's operation was performed by aliens and Amber, Doctor Brand and Agent Todd are all aliens.
  • Generally used in the Agent Pendergast novels for whoever the true identity of the Big Bad is in each book. Varies in Dance of Death: Since Diogenes is known as the antagonist of the book from the beginning, it instead reveals that Hugo Menzies is really Diogenes in disguise the entire time.
  • Airframe involves the investigation of a strange incident during a flight by one of their passenger planes. The pilot was one of the best in the industry, and the question that keeps coming up is how could he have screwed up a simple, routine issue that he had handled properly before? The answer: he didn't. He wasn't even in the pilot's seat when it happened. He'd let his son, who was also a pilot, but wasn't qualified for that aircraft type, take over, and he caused the problem through lack of experience.
  • The Alterien series. The Sisters of Orion reveal things to Oberon and the other Alteriens that forever change the way they look at themselves.
  • Neil Gaiman's American Gods: "It's a two-man con." Mr Wednesday (Odin) and Loki, gods of death and chaos, have been manipulating the Old Gods and the New Gods into a war so that they can feed on the resulting carnage. Wednesday is quite really a Magnificent Bastard.
  • At the end of Gifts, the first book in Annals of the Western Shore, Orrec figures out that he really does not have any gift. Every incident where he "unmade" something through his Power Incontinence, his father Canoc (who is very strongly gifted) was just behind him—knowing that his son was powerless, Canoc decided to invoke a family legend to give him a fearsome reputation among the Uplands instead. When Orrec confronts him on this, Canoc seems to have convinced himself that it was actually true.
  • Area 51: The series runs of these, starting with the fact that there are aliens on Earth. Probably the biggest is that these aliens created humanity. It's even the source of the seventh book's title-Area 51: The Truth.
  • Much is revealed to Caspian throughout the Astral Dawn series. He learns he is a Destined One and eventually comes to understand the truth of that destiny.
  • There are a couple in Blonde Bombshell, such as the location of the Mk. I Bomb, and Lucy Pavlov's true identity. That is to say, she IS the Mk. I Bomb, or at least a probe of it, and she had cannibalized the original weapon into the central servers for PavSoft.
  • In Bubble World, halfway through the book, it's revealed that Ricky is morbidly obese and in danger of dying. At the very end it's revealed that Jelissa isn't real and was Freesia's Insta-Friend to make up for losing Erin's friendship in the real world.
  • In The Hand of Oberon, 4th book of The Chronicles of Amber by Roger Zelazny, Ganelon is revealed to be the long-vanished Oberon.
  • In the third book of Codex Alera, it's revealed Tavi is Gaius Octavian, son of Isana and Septimus, and heir to the throne. Needless to say, this is a tricky spoiler to hide when discussing the rest of the series.
  • In Robert E. Howard's Conan the Barbarian story "Shadows In Zamboula", near the end, Zabibi reveals that her lover is the ruler of the city, and she is his mistress. At the very end, Conan muses on how he realized that up front and has stolen the ring she wanted him to retrieve.
  • The short story "Cop Killer" tells of an eager new police recruit, Max, who moves in with his veteran-cop partner and becomes a part of the family, only to be shot in the line of duty by a cheap crook. The grieving partner hunts down and kills the shooter, whose last words reveal that Max was a police dog.
  • In Daddy-Long-Legs, the revelation that Daddy Long Legs is Jervis Pendleton, though it is somewhat spoiled by the fact the letter that reveals this is addressed to "My very dearest Master-Jervie-Daddy-Long-Legs-Pendleton-Smith".
  • Dance Of The Butterfly has several. There are demons and those possessed of supernatural ability who fight them. The serial killer plaguing the city is a demon. The vigilante is Lilja Perhonen, and she has latent demon-hunting abilities she was not aware of.
  • The Dark Tower ends with the revelation that the eponymous Tower is a kind of "cosmic museum" filled with relics from the protagonist's life, and that its top floor houses a vortex that erases said protagonist's memory and takes him back to the beginning of his quest in the first book. He has actually spent the entire series trapped in a "Groundhog Day" Loop, destined to reach the Tower and start over again... just as he has already done numerous times before.
  • Devin and the Teacher has the title teacher explain at the end that he knew all along that Devin had been presenting other peoples' reports to get out of writing his own.
  • In The Dinosaur Lords, it turns out that:
    • The highest eschelons of the Garden's Council are allied with, enthralled by or otherwise in cahoots with a Gray Angel responsible for the crusade to wipe the Garden out.
    • The Emperor's confessor and the man who pulls Felipe's strings is another Grey Angel.
    • Aphrodite is a Genius Loci of entire Paradise, and the same being as Witness.
  • The Dresden Files: Wham Episode Changes has a big reveal for the series up to that point, but also for that book, in the first sentence.
    ''I picked up the phone and Susan Rodriguez said, "They've got our daughter."
  • Family Skeleton Mysteries: Near the end of book 1, it comes out that Sid was originally Allen Reece, a college student at Joshua Tay University, who was helping Dr. Jocasta Kirkland put her data into a computer database and discovered a critical error, invalidating her entire study. Her research assistant, whose work was based off of hers, killed him to cover it up, since it would have ruined his career before it even started. Thirty years later, when Dr. Kirkland finished the work, realized the same error and was fully prepared to go public with it, her former assistant killed her for the same reason.
  • In The Girl from the Miracles District:
    • The Big Bad is Nikita's twin brother, who's been raised by Ernest. He's not after her, but after her mother.
    • Robin is over two hundred years old, and his supposed memories are in fact forged from Nikita's.
  • In The Golden Compass:
    • Lyra's parents didn't die in an accident, as she was told by her guardians. She is actually the bastard daughter of Lord Asriel and Mrs. Coulter. Her guardians lied to her in in an attempt to protect her from her parents' dangerous political and religious entanglements, as well as her father's schemes. It is also revealed in the same conversation that Ma Costa once worked for Lord Asriel and actually saved Lyra's life when Mrs. Coulter's jaded husband came after Lyra and Lord Asriel.
    • "The Gobblers" actually work for Mrs. Coulter. They have been abducting children and experimenting on them on her orders.
  • Halfway through Gone Girl, it's told that Amy Dunne is not only not dead, but has in fact masterminded the entire thing in order to get revenge on her husband for cheating on her.
  • Great Expectations is pretty straightforward, up until you get to the end of Part II, in which Pip's benefactor turns out to be none other than Abel Magwitch, the convict he helped early in the first chapter, who just so happens to be a very rich felon. From there, almost every chapter in the book contains its own plot twist (which makes sense, as the book was orignally released as a serial).
  • Every Harry Potter book has at least one, with most of them having to do with the villain's identity and true nature. As Cerebus Syndrome set in, the series gradually came to deemphasize them, with the climax of each book instead revolving around the death of a major character; even so, they're still very much present in the later books. Notably, Goblet of Fire—as the turning point of the series—has both in the climax.
    • Philosopher's/Sorcerer's Stone: Professor Quirrell is the traitor at Hogwarts trying to steal the Sorcerer's Stone, and Voldemort has been possessing his body all along.
    • Chamber of Secrets: The Heir of Slytherin is Tom Riddle—better known as Lord Voldemort. Ginny Weasley has been his Unwitting Pawn, as she opened the Chamber while possessed by the spirit of Riddle's old diary.
    • Prisoner of Azkaban:
      • Moony, Wormtail, Padfoot and Prongs are Remus Lupin, Peter Pettigrew, Sirius Black and James Potter, respectively.
      • Sirius Black is innocent, and he was loyal to the Potters until the end. The one who actually betrayed the Potters to Voldemort and commited the murders that got Black sent to Azkaban was Peter Pettigrew, a.k.a. Wormtail.
      • Pettigrew is still alive, and he has spent the last 12 years posing as the Weasley family's pet rat, Scabbers. Black has been trying to break into Hogwarts to kill Pettigrew the whole time, not Harry.
      • Professor Lupin is secretly a werewolf. Snape has been trying to expose Lupin as a werewolf to get him fired from his teaching post at Hogwarts.
      • The Shrieking Shack is actually a sanctuary that Dumbledore built for Lupin when he was a student at Hogwarts, and still trying to cope with his lycanthropy. The Whomping Willow was planted to hide the entrance to the secret tunnel that leads into the Shack.
      • The mysterious Black Dog was Sirius Black the whole time, as he's been looking after Harry while in his Animagus disguise.
      • Hermione has been keeping up with her class schedule with the help of a Time-Turner, a powerful magical device that lets her make short trips back in time.
    • Goblet of Fire: Alastor "Mad-Eye" Moody is really Barty Crouch Jr., who has been hiding his identity with Polyjuice Potion ever since escaping from Azkaban. Also, the Triwizard Tournament is secretly a trap designed to deliver Harry into Voldemort's hands; Crouch/Moody arranged for Harry to enter the Tournament so that he could help him win, ensuring that Voldemort could use his blood in his resurrection ritual.
    • Order of the Phoenix: The mysterious hallway from Harry's dreams is the Ministry of Magic's Department of Mysteries, which houses a prophecy about Voldemort's defeat at Harry's hands—which first led Voldemort to target Harry as a baby. Harry has been dreaming about the hallway because Voldemort projected visions into Harry's mind to trick him into retrieving the prophecy so that he could steal it.
    • Half-Blood Prince: The Half-Blood Prince is Professor Snape—the Half-Blood son of a woman named "Eileen Prince". Also, Professor Slughorn was the one who taught Tom Riddle how to craft Horcruxes when he was a student at Hogwarts.
    • Deathly Hallows:
      • "R.A.B." is Sirius's deceased brother, "Regulus Arcturus Black".
      • The Invisibility Cloak is really one of three fabled magical items—allegedly once gifts from Death—that can supposedly make the owner immortal if they're all found.
      • Professor Dumbledore was once close friends with Gellert Grindelwald, the Dark Wizard who he's credited with defeating. He was responsible for taking the Elder Wand from Grindelwald in single combat, making him its most recent owner.
      • Professor Snape was on Dumbledore's side the whole time, as he defected from the Death Eaters to avenge the murder of Lily Potter—the only woman he ever loved. Dumbledore actually ordered Snape to kill him, because he knew that he was dying from the curse placed on Marvolo Gaunt's ring, and he wanted to die on his own terms to prevent Voldemort from taking the Elder Wand. Snape was the one who cast the doe Patronus to guide Harry to the Sword of Gryffindor.
      • Dumbledore's old Snitch contains the Resurrection Stone, and it's designed to open when Harry announces that he's about to die.
      • The final Horcrux is Harry himself. Voldemort inadvertently left a fragment of his own soul in Harry's body the night that he murdered Lily and James.
      • The rightful owner of the Elder Wand was really Draco Malfoy, who disarmed Dumbledore before Snape killed him. Professor Snape didn't really claim the Wand from Dumbledore, because Dumbledore chose to die. Harry unwittingly won possession of the Wand when he disarmed Malfoy in single combat at Malfoy Manor.
  • Phillip Roth's The Human Stain has the revelation that the protagonist Coleman Silk, who loses his job in the first chapter after he's accused of being a racist, is African-American himself. He rejected his African-American heritage after his father disowned him as a teenager, and decided to live his life passing himself off as a White man—which he could do, because of his partial White ancestry.
  • Victor Hugo's The Hunchback of Notre Dame: Esmeralda is Gudule's long-lost daughter.
  • In Invasion of Kzarch, the pirate chieftan, Bloody Jack, gets a call from someone who wants to make a deal. Instead, the pirate gives a counter offer, which is accepted. Neither the offers or the caller are disclosed. A few misleading events happen, making the reader think the whole deal was about an assassination. Then, it’s revealed the deal was from the guerrillas’ general, who was betraying the marines and his own forces to the pirates in order to gain control of Kzarch once the pirates had left. Oh, and that the assassination attempt had been done by himself, strangely enough.
  • Edgar Rice Burroughs' John Carter of Mars: In The Chessman of Mars, when Turan reveals that A-Kor is a prisoner, U-Thor demands to know the meaning of it, and reveals that after O-Tar gave him the slave woman who was A-Kor's mother, he had freed and married her, and so he regards A-Kor as his son.
  • Khaled Hosseini's The Kite Runner where Amir discovers that Hasaan is his half-brother.
  • Lorien Legacies: The Power of Six reveals that there were not nine, but ten, Loric Garde children sent to Earth, each being meant to take over the roles of the original ten Elders of Lorien (including Pittacus Lore, the purported author of the books.) This also makes a throwaway comment about the "ten Elders" in the first book a Chekhov's Gun.
  • The Machineries of Empire:
    • In Ninefox Gambit:
      • The invariant ice is not actually invariant; it's an exotic effect and as such, can be influenced by other exotics.
      • Shuos Jedao intends to overthrow the Hexarchate.
      • Vahenz, one of the heresy's ringleaders, is a freelance agent employed by the Hafn.
    • In Extracurricular Activities: Meng is a double agent working for the Gwa, and the entire "rescue mission" is pointless, because the disappearance of their ship was them returning to the Gwa Reality.
  • Shadowthrone and Cotillion, the new lords of the Realm of Shadow in the Malazan Book of the Fallen are actually the old Emperor Kellanved and his personal assassin Dancer, who were murdered by Laseen years prior to the start of the series. Their violent deaths were actually their steppingstone to godhood, but that's not common knowledge until a few characters discover this in Deadhouse Gates.
  • There are a series of reveals throughout the The Maze Runner Trilogy that, when strung together, give a coherent version of the backstory. Sometime in the past, a solar flare intense enough to make it through our atmosphere caught the earth, frying it between the tropics of Capricorn and Cancer. The resulting rampant destitution made relief attempts almost impossible, so to lessen the burden some genius came up with the incredibly smart plan to release a population control disease so there would be less people to deal with. The virus, soon to be known as the Flare, mutated into a Hate Plague that almost the entire Earth’s population caught. In order to combat it, the world's governments formed WICKED, tasked with finding a cure. WICKED’s approach was to brain-map the immune and try to transfer that immunity to the public. Unfortunately, the brain-mapping required would be ridiculously detailed and ultimately impossible. The first two novels in their entirety were stress tests used to remotely map the protagonist’s brain patterns. The Maze, the Grievers, and the Scorch were all governed by WICKED’s ridiculously advanced structural- and bio-engineering, in an attempt to create the blueprint for a cure, that will require the brain of the Final Candidate to (maybe) be made a reality. Meanwhile, the "quarantined" cities are succumbing to infection due to corruption and selfishness.
  • Subverted in Les Misérables. Jean Valjean is an ex-convict who had almost returned to a life of crime after being released but had been redeemed by a kind bishop. Mr Madeleine is a good, philanthropic mayor who always helps the poor and feeds puppies. The two are introduced as completely separate people, though it is clear to the reader that they are the same person. After a while the author mentions that his readers will certainly have worked out by now that they are one and the same. There is a rather dramatic reveal of this identity to a courtroom though:
  • In Obsidian Mirror, there are two rather large ones at the end of the novel: The first is that Sarah is Venn's great-granddaughter. The second is that her existence proves that Venn will succeed in bringing Leah back, because he and Leah had no children before she died. To prove that her great-grandmother is Leah and not Summer, Sarah gives Venn a diamond brooch that he buried with Leah.
  • Despite being incomplete, The Pale King has plenty:
    • The owner of the Doberman Hand Puppet is Dr. Lehrl.
    • The identity of drifter girl and the fate of her mother.
    • The identity of Mr. X. It makes the Uncomfortable Elevator Moment chapter read completely different the second time through.
    • The fate of Lane Dean's girlfriend and their unborn child.
    • The true purpose of Claude's investigation.
    • Chris Fogle's role at the IRS.
    • Dr. Lehrl's intentions for Post 047.
  • The Parasol Protectorate: In book 4, Heartless, Alexia discovers that Professor Lyall masterminded the events that led to Lord Maccon taking over the Woolsey Pack because he wanted the previous Alpha dead because a) he'd gone insane, and b) Alexia's father died trying to kill him, and Lyall had been in a relationship with Mr. Tarabotti and wanted revenge. Also, Major Channing reveals he had deduced what Lyall was up to, but kept quiet.
  • For the Pretty Little Liars series:
    • The first book, Pretty Little Liars, reveals that Alison is dead, and the "A" who's been texting them and mocking them about their secrets that they thought only Ali knew is really someone else.
    • Book Four, Unbelievable: A (or the first one, at least) is Mona Vanderwaal, Hanna's supposed-best friend.
    • A whole bunch of closely-related ones in the eighth book, Wanted: 1)Alison actually had an identical twin sister, Courtney DiLaurentis, who was put in a mental hospital at around age 8; 2) the "Alison" that the Liars were best friends with for years was actually Courtney the whole time, who began her friendship with them and dumped Alison's old best friends after she performed a Twin Switch and got her sister locked up in the hospital in her place; and 3) the real Alison is the one who killed "their" Alison (Courtney), and is the second A who's been trying to kill them.
    • Ali's Pretty Little Lies (a companion novel that serves as a prequel to the series) reveals that Courtney (a.k.a. "Their Ali") was not really crazy like Alison claimed she was in Wanted. Alison was jealous that Courtney was more popular and likable than her, so she framed Courtney as being crazy to get her taken away. Courtney was in fact a very nice girl, but had to act meaner than she really was for her disguise as Ali to work, and only truly became a bitch near the end of her life as a result of a ton of stress thanks to her life beginning to crash down around her.
    • Deadly, the 14th book, reveals that "Helper A" is Nick Maxwell, who was faking being in love with Courtney and actually loved the real Ali, and who pretended to be a friendly male figure in each of the Liars' lives who helped them with their secrets in order to get close to them.
    • The final novel, Vicious: Emily's death at the beginning of the novel was faked, so that she could go off the grid to track down Ali. She succeeds.
  • The Queen's Thief: At the end of The Thief, when Gen and company are brought into Eddis' throne room, and the Queen recognizes him, sighs in exasperation at his appearance, and holds out her hand for the missing artifact he's had hidden in his hair for half the book.
  • In the Rainbow Magic series, there are a couple relating to Jack Frost.
    • The last Night Fairy book reveals that he's afraid of the dark.
    • Belle the Birthday Fairy's book reveals his birthday is the same as Rachel's mom's.
  • Ranger's Apprentice: Halt has a twin brother. And he's a prince.
  • The penultimate chapter of Isaac Asimov's Second Foundation had three characters giving three different solutions to the mysterious location of the Second Foundation. In the last chapter, yet another character reveals the true location, and the narration tells the reader his Secret Identity in the very last sentence.
  • In Magyk, the first book of Septimus Heap, it's revealed that Boy 412 is Septimus Heap.
  • In Shaman Blues:
    • The real murderer is not Anna, but her brother Tadeusz, who sics his sisters' wraith on children in order to prolong his own life.
    • The true reason behind Konstancja running away from Witkacy was that she was carrying his child. In other words, Witkacy has a daughter.
  • Simon vs. The Homo Sapiens Agenda has the reveal of Blue's true identity: Abraham "Bram" Louis Greenfield.
  • A Song of Ice and Fire, Gambit Pileup that it is, has a bunch of these, ranging from Arstan Whitebeard actually being Ser Barristan Selmy, to Jon Arryn's murderer being his wife, Lysa, at the behest of Littlefinger, and probably culminating with Doran Martell's twenty-year-long revenge gambit to return the Targaryens to power. There's also the as-yet-unrevealed promise Ned made to Lyanna, which has been set up as a particularly whammy reveal since the first book.
  • Sophie's World by Jostein Gaarder has a Nested Story Reveal, where the protagonist, Sophie Amundsen, is actually a fictional character in a book that a Norwegian military officer named Albert Knag wrote for his daughter Hilde as a birthday present. Alberto Knox, Sophie's philosophy teacher, is actually Knag's Author Avatar, and his lectures on philosophy were actually meant for Hilde. This is why various characters in the book keep randomly saying "Happy Birthday Hilde!", and why Hilde doesn't seem to exist (even though Sophie was told to deliver a message to her).
  • The Spirit Thief has his share of them as well. The major ones, in order of appearance:
    • The land on which the Kingdom of Mellinor now stands was once a great inland sea that's been enslaved by the first king.
    • Eli's uncanny affinity for spirits comes partly from him being Benehime's favourite.
    • Josef is the heir apparent to the kingdom of Osera.
    • Banage and Sara are Eli's parents.
    • The entire world is a tiny sphere surrounded by demons trying to devour it.
    • Benehime wants to destroy the world she's supposed to protect.
  • Spock's World: the identity of the Big Bad.
  • The second and third novels of the Star Trek series Terok Nor take advantage of the medium to set up a reveal they couldn't pull off onscreen. Specifically, two apparently different characters turn out to be the same man. The security chief on Terok Nor station, Thrax, is revealed mid-way through the third book to be the same character as Sa'kat, the loyal second to outlaw priestess Astraea.
    • In another Star Trek novel, Sarek, the Freelans turn out to be Romulans.
  • Story Thieves:
    • In the second book: Doyle is Fowen
    • In the Third book: The Dark is Doc Twilight (who is Bethany's Father. Yes, they actually did that.
    • Also in the third book: Nobody is... some random mook we've never met before. And also evil.
    • Additionally, in the second book: Nobody is James Riley. (Except not really because the fifth book reveals that James Riley is actually a real person who was absorbed by Nobody. Mind Blown.)
  • The Strange Case of Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde is today rightly viewed as a Gothic horror classic, but it was originally meant as more of a mystery. Jekyll and Hyde being the same person was meant as a Wham Line for the reader, but just about everyone knows this already, so while the story is still widely admired, the effect is somewhat different for us today than it would have been for readers in author Robert Louis Stevenson's time.
  • Neil Gaiman's short story "A Study in Emerald" (a crossover that incorporates the Cthulhu Mythos into a Sherlock Holmes mystery) has a major one at the end, where the narrator and his detective friend are actually Sebastian Moran and James Moriarty, and that the murderers that they're chasing are John Watson and Sherlock Holmes. As is gradually revealed, the story takes place in a particularly nasty Crapsack World after the Great Old Ones have subjugated much of humanity and set their hybrid offspring up as the monarchs of Europe—leaving Moriarty to become a crusader for law and order while Holmes devotes himself to bringing down Europe's demonic rulers.
  • The Sword of Shannara has an important reveal in the denouement that completely changes the way the reader will see the whole story. At the beginning of the story, Allanon tells Shea Ohmsford, the last living direct descendant of the great Elven hero-king Jerle Shannara, that he, Shea, must go on a quest to regain the legendary Sword of Shannara, which only he can wield against the Warlock Lord, the evil wizard whom King Jerle defeated with the Sword centuries earlier. After Shea has killed the Warlock Lord with the Sword, thereby saving the world, Allanon reveals to Shea that Jerle failed, which, in retrospect, was completely obvious, for, as Allanon points out, had Jerle succeeded, he would have killed the Warlock Lord, as Shea did. In fact, however, Jerle did not really understand the magic of the Sword, or accept how it worked, and so he was only able to weaken the Warlock Lord, not kill him. It's a great moment, again, because it both makes perfect sense in retrospect, even though most readers will not see it coming, and explains just why Allanon was so secretive all along.
  • In Poul Anderson's Time Patrol story "Delenda Est", the jump forward in time reveals tampering with history has created an Alternate History.
  • Trapped on Draconica: The final chapter changes everything:
    • Gothon's wife is Dead All Along and he accidentally killed her in a squabble and deluded himself into thinking otherwise.
    • Lucia has been possessed by Kazebar for the entire story and manipulated Gothon to get his hands on Ben who was thrown into another world by Dronor to keep the power to travel between worlds from being abused.
    • Ben and Erowin are twins and their father is the Man Behind the Man, Kazebar.
  • Harry Turtledove's "Trantor Falls": At the end of the story, we learn what secret the University has been protecting, They're the Second Foundation, and they're trying to minimize the number of times warlords like Gilmer take over Trantor.
  • The Unexplored Summon://Blood-Sign:
    • The White Queen, presented as the benevolent Top God of the setting, is actually an Eldritch Abomination who's also a Yandere for the main character Kyousuke. The entire plot is driven by her efforts to make him love her again.
    • The White Queen can't be killed by anything in the entire universe, because she defeated and conquered the Anthropomorphic Personifications of the laws of the universe. Though at the same time, it's hinted that there is a loophole to this.
    • It turns out that there is a method of truly destroying the White Queen: creating an artificial being outside of the White Queen's control, and embedding it into the universe as an entirely new law.
  • Villains by Necessity: Blackmail is Sir Pryse, one of the Six Heroes.
  • Warhammer 40,000:
    • In Ben Counter's Horus Heresy novel Galaxy in Flames, when Tarvitz realizes that Horus intends to virusbomb the Space Marines on the planet.
    • In James Swallow's The Flight of the Eisenstein, when Garro insists on hailing a Thunderbird he has been ordered to shoot down, and learns that it's Tarvitz, trying to warn the Space Marines on the planet of Horus's treacherous attack. Sendek, who prided himself on being The Stoic, has a Not So Stoic moment of pure surprise.
      "Saul Tarvitz," whispered Sendek. "First Captain of the Emperor's Children. Impossible! He's a man of honour! If he's turned traitor, then the galaxy has gone insane!"
      Decius found he couldn't look away from Garro's shocked expression. "Perhaps it has." It was a long moment before Decius realized that the words has been his.
  • Wet Desert: Tracking Down a Terrorist on the Colorado River: Sid and Ryan are informed of the failure of the Glen Canyon Dam by a helicopter loudspeaker as the Grand Canyon is being evacuated.
  • In The Widow of Desire Wallace Nevsky is murdered. His last gift to his wife Natalie was a full length Russian lynx coat. Then Natalie finds out that Wallace was killed because he uncovered evidence of a conspiracy within the USSR, and sneaked it into the US by hiding it in the fur coat. Later when interrogated by the KGB, Natalie is given a courtesy physical and finds out she's carrying Wallace's child.
  • The Witchlands loves its reveals. Among others, it turns out that:
    • Safi's uncle has been feigning his alcoholism all along.
    • Iseult is a Weaverwitch rather than a Theadwitch.
    • Ragnor is Aeduan's father.
    • The Hell-Bards are Cleaved witches held at bay by chains on their necks.
    • Kullen is alive and evil, and Merik survived an exploding ship because of his bond to him.
    • Owl has a mountain bat under her control.
    • ...and more.
  • Within Ruin turns everything on its head halfway through when it's revealed:
    • Virgil is really Kalthused, and centuries old.
    • Descarta is a homonculus, created to host the soul of Ankaa, explaining her lack of memories.
    • The Bethel was all invented and spread by Virgil so that large populations would erect statues of the maiden.
    • The statues of the maiden are actually soul harvesters, absorbing the souls of all who have died within it's proximity.
    • The plague and on-going wars were created by Virgil to kill as many people as possible so as to collect the most souls.
    • Basically Virgil is the king of lies.


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