Set in past, "turning churn in
the dairy", "jangle of harness",
"iron-shod boots", "cobbles"
This gives the opening a pleasant,
sleepy atmosphere that contrasts
the attack to come.
Reid states no definite time, suggests a
sense of timelessness- the events and
emotions can take place anywhere, anytime.
Set on a farm. Disposing of unwanted
animals is what farming is about. Natural
setting for the story as farms have plenty of
places for cats to live, but are troubled by
having too many around.
Note: Cats are useful for controlling
the rat/mice population. BUT when
cats aren't useful to man because
there is "ower mony cats aboot",
man considers it his right to dispose
The setting provokes
an important theme:
does man have the
right to destroy
animals because they
are a source of
Many of his
begin with a
the story is
the sense of
"Throwing the sack on the bank",
"Panting with his exertion",
"Stooping, he could see the eyes",
"Kneeling, his last stone gone"
Some sentences are set apart as their
own paragraphs to add emphasis to
their effect on the reader.
"But so far the
honours lay with the
the reader is aware
that the kitten has the
advantage at that
point in the story
"The thatch of the
farmhouse, dry as
tinder, was aflare" is
sentence and set
apart to have
maximum impact. It
also heightens the
enormity of what the
hired man has
This is an effective comparison because it
suggests the intense sound made by both
the gunshot and a branch breaking off. It's
also useful because guns introduce the
thought of death, one of the main themes.