It's been many years since I read this, and I've really appreciated your discussion, particularly the centering of the theme of grief. This is all from memory and your recap, but I can see how grief could unite the home invasion and cosmic strands of the story. I don't mean to reduce the Recluse's defense against the pig creatures to crude allegory, but there was something that struck me about the relentlessness of the assault, the way in which the things that want to hurt you keep snuffling around and clawing at the door, and the need to be constantly on guard, that seemed very much like a certain mode of experiencing grief and loss, especially early on. Then the journeys across time and space and the wish to both preserve a moment for eternity and to escape present circumstances are more explicitly tied to the Recluse's sense of loss. Clearly that's not all that's going on thematically in this book, but your discussion drew that thread out for me. Thanks!