#Musings: Tropes in Literature (with Examples)

The textbook definition of trope refers to an overused situation or plot in fiction. Now, using tropes is in no way wrong. In fact, some people prefer reading fiction around their favourite tropes. The trick is to write it in such a way that it doesn’t seem like it’s being forced. Nor does it feel like it’s the same story just with different characters. That being said, I thought today we could pick some of our favourite books based on their tropes.

Enemies to Lovers 

The first book that comes to mind when I think of this trope is, of course, Pride & Prejudice. Elizabeth Bennett and Fitzwilliam Darcy were in fact enemies before they realized their feelings for each other. 

In more recent years, we have The D.U.F.F. as one of our prime examples. Because let’s face it Wesley and Bianca were not exactly friends. And despite all of their hookups, Bianca did hate Wes’ guts. 


And when we are talking about enemies to lovers trope, who can forget the two books that bookstagram has been obsessing over: i. Red, White & Royal Blue and ii. The Cruel Prince (well, the whole of The Folk of Air Series). 

Fake Dating 

One of the most popular and the most cliched tropes is of course fake dating. For some reason, it has gained popularity over the years. The biggest example of this is of course To All The Boys I’ve Loved Before. It went on to become a Netflix movie as did its sequels. 


Alex Light’s The Upside of Falling has made waves as a groundbreaking book in the same area of people pretending to only date each other.


A little closer to home, The Secret Proposal, has the same themes of fake dating and being fake engaged. 

Sibling’s Best Friend / Best Friend’s Siblings 

The Kissing Booth relied heavily on the whole best friend’s brother trope. My second novel, The Guitar Girl, relied on the brother's best friend. But as you are going through the article - I am sure you are able to identify tropes of your own. Books that you’ve loved and sworn are different also seem to be fitting into one formula or another, isn’t it? 


Friends to Lovers 

This is one of the most common tropes seen in books. People have been friends forever or they become friends, and eventually fall in love with each other. Case in point: The Mediator Series by Meg Cabot, or even The Princess Diaries by Meg Cabot. Both have been pretty amazing series in my opinion. 


Of course, the list of tropes isn’t exhaustive. In this article, I tried to explore the ones that are found more commonly. If you can think of any tropes that you constantly encounter, let’s talk about it in the comments! 


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