The Australian outback is the home of Julitha and it is her story which plays second place to that of the cat, Ma'amu, whom her stepmother will not allow in the house and who learns to make her own way in a wild state. Juli's life with her ""cocky-farmer"" father gives her a sensitive regard for his animals, for Ma'amu in particular, gives her too a pity for Rita who hates the land and even the sickly son she bears, and keeps her close to the disasters that befall them. The plague of mice, the death of the baby, the drought and Rita's fiery end, her concern over the cat and her litters pace the cycles of Ma'amu's marauding, stout-hearted career and her 500 mile return after Juli sends her away. Cut through and through with the threats of the farm, Booramby, with the natural history of the outback, with the life of the predators and with the rounding out of some nine years of Ma'amu's and Juli's life, this -- in spite of the author's dedication to feline superiority -- has a deep sense of the country, of the strong ones who are not conquered and the weak who are, and is the type of novel which opens a new view of other surroundings. Special.