That having been said, it does not seem to be as deep of a story as many of the others we have read. It was a great action-adventure romp with a sprinkling of politics, fantasy, and interpersonal relations. However, I feel that it barely asks the "What if?" question. Perhaps the question it asks is "What if humans needed to engage in a symbiotic partnership with a slightly less sentient being in order to live in space?" But if that is the question, the scope of the story is not broad enough to fully answer the question.
All in all, I feel that "Mongoose" would be a great addition to an anthology of stories by the same author set in the same universe. As it is, however, it amounts to little more than a pleasurable read.