Lee Child’s short story “Safe Enough” follows a mostly chronological plot structure, with one flashback that presents the main events.
The beginning of the story offers a lengthy background of the main character, Wolfe. Readers are told that, although Wolfe was “a city boy” (p. 47, l. 1), he now lives “in the country” (p. 47, l.9). This captures their curiosity and makes them read on to find out why Wolfe moved away from the city.
The story starts in the present and ends in the present, but the main plot takes place in the past, telling readers how Wolfe came to live in the suburbs. Therefore, the structure of the story is circular.
As the action unfolds, the author drops certain hints and foreshadowing elements, warning readers that Wolfe might not be only an average electrician. The first hint is his obsession with Mary Lovell, the suburban wife he meets in the woods: “He saw the...