This also means that the structure of the novel is more or less set. Just as readers of Gaiman's The Graveyard Book would know the ending if they knew their Kipling, some readers of Gould's latest may know Kimbell's path through 7th Sigma in advance. Gould makes a point of parallelling most of the major characters and arcs from Kipling's book. That explains why, at times, the book reads more like a magazine serial than a novel. Just as in the original, the book covers a series of adventures, while the overarching theme is secondary to the plot of the moment.
Since this is clearly a deliberate choice, I won't weigh in on it either way, but some readers may feel the book meanders as a result. They may also feel that we don't get enough at the mystery of the bugs. The book's ending leaves things very open-ended, potentially setting up for a sequel, or possibly just mimicing the ending of Kim, which was also open to interpretation (though there was no mystery of robotic bugs).
Since he lives in New Mexico and has practiced aikido for decades, Gould knows whereof he speaks on these topics. As in his previous novel, Helm, the discipline and application of this martial art is a major aspect of the book, and also as in that novel, his description of it here makes it sound extremely cool. It's also obvious that he put a lot of thought into what a region without metal, but access to all our other modern technology and organization might look like. He gives humanity credit, by assuming whatever the hardship, wherever we can live, we will live.
7th Sigma does what any classic adventure tale does: it describes a very scary and dangerous world in believable detail, while simultaneously making the reader wish they could go adventuring there themselves. Although I would have preferred a little more focus on the deeper science fictional aspects of his world and a little less on the narrative connection to Kim, I can't deny the inherent readability of this book. It's much lighter in tone and content than Gould's other works, and may not stick as much with you after you put it down, but I defy you not to devour the whole thing in a weekend.