Style of language

The short story “Kittens” by Dean Koontz is written in a descriptive style. The story begins with a description of the river with many adjectives: “The cool green water slipped along the streambed, bubbling around smooth brown stones, reflecting the melancholy willows that lined the bank” (p. 420, ll. 1-3). The description sets the scene and creates atmosphere. It also serves to create false expectations in the reader, as the opening scene is a very peaceful one, in contrast with the violent ending of the story. It is also important to note the presence of water from the beginning, since water will play an important role in the short story.

Throughout the short story the author uses positive words in some descriptions: “glistening ice” (p. 421, l. 7), “cool green water” (p. 420, l. 1). However, negative words are more frequent, especially in connection with Marnie’s father - “dark irregular splotches of perspiration” (p. 421, ll. 33) or “patronizing smile” (p. 422, l. 7) - and even to the twins, in instances such as “deep gurgle” (p. 423, l. 32) or “fat throats” (p. 423, l. 33).

The story also makes use of fragmentation. For example, Mary’s words at the end “The bathtub – our precious angles!” (p. 426, l. 6) point at her shock and her inability to understand what has happ...

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