The short story “Bone Deep” by Martin Malone takes place in a town in Ireland, as evidenced by the mention of the 1798 rebellion and the Curragh Races (l. 27), which take place in Newbridge, Ireland. The mentions of television, cars, and the EU help date the story during the 20th century or 21st century.
The main events take place in the family’s sitting room on a Sunday evening. The family sits around an American oak table inherited from the mother’s parents. The unchanging scenery gives the static impression of a theatre play. The action is focused on the characters’ thoughts and feelings, rather than on events.
The setting during the brief flashback when we learn about the accident is a sunny May afternoon (l. 27) when the father and Terry and Marcus are on their way to watch a horse race. The bright atmosphere is deceptive, as the car ride ends in tragedy.