I got very emotionally invested in this book very quickly. Smoky's grief was intense and painful to be a part of, but her story sucked me right in.
Now that I have a little distance from it (a whole twelve hours!) I can see the things that didn't work - the sudden! sex! with a character who was just introduced as a ~protector~ was the worst, I think. It just seems like a skewed view of the grieving process. Suicide was barely off the table for Smoky at that point.
I had a hard time sleeping after finishing this book, because I just kept thinking of Leo's poor dog.
“Someone cut off all his legs. I have to put him down.” I stand, gaping. Poleaxed. Then his voice breaks. The clean, poignant break of a china plate hitting brick. “Who would do something like that, Smoky?
I got home and he was there in the living room, trying to . . . trying to . . .” His grief makes him sound like he is gagging, as he finds the words. “Trying to crawl to me. There was blood everywhere, and he was making these awful sounds, like . . . like a baby. Looking at me with those eyes, it was like . . . he looked like he thought he’d done something wrong. Like he was asking me, ‘What, what did I do wrong? I’ll fix it, just tell me. See? I’m a good dog.’ ”
The "See? I'm a good dog." line just had me bawling
in the dark on my couch at 1AM. I felt pure, unadulterated rage at this fictional killer; my poor emotions.