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Lara's grief after the death of her mother is compounded by a new, harsher life on a remote farm with a stepmother who refuses her any sympathy and, worse still, bullying at school. Her discovery of what she takes to be a fantasy dingo, which she names Thunderwith, gives her the comfort she craves. She is able, slowly, to come through metaphorical and real thunder and fire and confront the reality of her fears. The scene where she holds the dead dog (in reality a broken down farm dog) and howls her grief through the rain is deeply moving. Another powerful, dramatic and thoughtful Australian novel for teenagers.