The analysis of the short story “The Boogeyman” by Stephen King reveals a plot structure typical of the horror genre, since the tension builds up steadily throughout the story. Further classic horror features include foreshadowing elements and a twist ending. Most of the story is told in a flashback by the main character.
The main character is a young man named Lester Billings, who is divorced and the father of three children, all of whom are dead. Another important character is Dr Harper, the psychiatrist, who is revealed at the end of the story to be the boogeyman in disguise.
The physical setting is the psychiatrist’s office, as well as the family’s two houses. As this is a horror story, the physical setting plays an important part in evoking feelings of unease in the reader. The social setting explores the role of family, mental illness, misogyny, and prejudices.
The story is told from the point of view of a third-person narrator. The narrator appears to have access to the thoughts and feelings of both Dr Harper and Lester Billings. The story shifts to first-person narrator when Lester tells his account (which might not be entirely reliable).
The language style of the narrative and Dr. Harper's dialogue is relatively formal, but Lester’s first-person account uses an informal language style, with several slang terms, many of them offensive. Throughout the story, there are many descriptive words and phrases which aim to produce a heightened emotional response in readers.
You can find the full analysis in the next pages.