The novel is written in the third person narrative by an omniscient narrator, allowing the reader insight into the innermost thoughts and feelings of each of the characters.
This novel has also been compared to a fable and, although fables usually feature talking animals, the Cone Gatherers does have a moral tale. Calum’s affinity with animals and the woodland setting makes us focus on the key characters.
Duror is portrayed as a monster that preys on the helpless Calum, initially trying to trap him with the deer hunt, just as he trapped the rabbits. Initially unsuccessful, he does succeed in the end.
The simplicity of the setting and structure, together with the atmosphere, make this novel appear to be like a fable. Underlying this is a tale of the animalistic instinct within human beings, best represented in the contrasting characters of Duror and the innocent Calum, who dies in the end to provide hope for mankind.