Hey, look. After much dithering, I finally read/finish and wrote something commentary-ish.
3.5 rounded up, because what the hell, it was a LHNB story.
The presentation is odd. Not altogether displeasing, but still jarring nonetheless. I remember having just the hardest time trying to figure out what was going on the first...*ahem* few attempts at reading this, way back when. It got tabled, and then stuff happened, and my hiatus last August happened, and then school happened, and then Hannibal happened, and happened, and happened. I haven't been having luck with the past few things I've tried to read, and that somehow translated in my subconsiousness to, "Hey, why don't you try reading this thing you remember not being able to understand?"
But yeah, I'm certainly enjoying it more than I remember doing so in the past. Parts of it are rough, of course, but that's understandable. The overplot stuff seems a bit exposition-y, but that isn't a big issue, and it's quite amazing how deeply an issue the author wove. Like shit, man, that stuff is fucking depressing as hell.
Anyways, turns out this story was the answer to my renewed plea for ages ago. Once I got past the "this thing confuses me. how does it plot?" and got further into it, I was please to see OH, HEY, LOOK, THERE'S GROOMING
Also, YES, FERAL HOGS ARE DANGEROUS. HAVING READ OLD YELLER, I CAN ATTEST THAT PIGS ARE/CAN BE TERRIFYING.
But on a more serious note, I like the way the mating thing is portrayed. Unlike others, with the more imprinting-like Mating Bonds, this is the sort that seems actually realistic. Oh, fueled by hormones and pheromones, sure, but started from the inkling of something and built up from there.
That's all the comments I wrote. I think the ending was a bit abrupt. As in very abrupt. Made it feel very truncated. I mean, I guess you gotta make allowances since it was a DRitC story, so *shrug.