Published: 28/05/2017
ISBN: 9781788036870
eISBN: 9781788032193
Format: Paperback/eBook

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About the Author

As a child I had three ambitions: to be a champion dressage rider, to dance the roll of the Sugar Plum Fairy at the Royal Opera House in London and to write and illustrate my own children's stories... read more

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Dancing Paws of Magic
by Maria McArdle

“This children’s book is a delight! How can I get front row tickets?”
– Francesca Watson, The Cat

Deep in the countryside near Plucker’s Bottom stands Pluckerslea Hall, an English stately home dating back to the thirteenth century. Visiting furless folk are unaware of the secret tunnels that run beneath, and the music rooms, dormitories, dance studios and theatre fitted out for occupants of a much smaller stature.

The occupants are cats! Cats wearing tights, tutus, make-up and wigs, and cats performing in ballets like Coppelia and Swan Lake. But when a beautiful gypsy cat warns of impending doom and trouble comes from the ruthless Bruiser Bumfluff, his fiendish crows and the cut-throat Black Treacle Farm Gang, the cats stop dancing, leaving their ballet master, Erico Poochetti the Shih Tzu, in tears. The future looks bleak for the Pusska Moggyinsky Ballet Company as an evil being plots revenge, lurking in the shadows and watching their every move.

Can the ghostly presence of a magical Irish Lepremogg restore the cats’ amazing dancing paws of magic?

Inspired by the books of Pamela Brown, Noel Streatfield and Gladys Malvern, the second book in Maria McArdle’s Pusska Moggyinsky Ballet Company series tells of a friendship between animals that would otherwise be enemies and their fears and determination to preserve their magical way of life.

Dancing Paws of Magic contains a number of Maria’s own beautiful illustrations and will be enjoyed by children aged 9-11 years with a love of dancing, theatre and cats, as well as fans of her first book, Introducing the Pusska Moggyinsky Ballet Company.

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Christmas will soon be here and you'll be thinking about gifts for those special friends and family members!
'Dancing Paws of Magic', as well as some real adventure and spooky magic, describes a quite unique performance of 'Sleeping Beauty'. Purrfect for animal loving ballet fans of all ages!
I will be Book Signing
Saturday 18th. November
at the Annual Fair of the East Dorset Association of the National Trust.
9.30am - 2.30pm Barrington Theatre, Ferndown Dorset.
As well as copies of my books, I have some lovely mounted prints and cards of illustrations available.

Have you ever seen a lepremogg? Do you know what a lepremogg is? No?
Well I have an inkling and you'll find my thoughts on the subject on the Blog Page of my website.
But first on my Blog are two little stories with faded photos, of those real-life, brave old cats, who were the inspirations for my character of the magical lepremogg, Galway O'Toot.

Congratulations to all the Winners in the Goodreads Giveaway - finished midnight 22nd July. Your signed copies of 'Dancing Paws of Magic' are already winging their way to you via the Moggyinsky Super Deluxe Carrier Pigeon Service.

Dancing Cats go WORLDWIDE!
Great News! My book, 'Dancing Paws of Magic' is now available to order from local book stores overseas and through
Readers the world over can read all about The Pusska Moggyinsky Ballet Company, of love and loyalty against adversity, a magical Irish Lepremogg called Galway O'Toot and those amazing 'Dancing Paws of Magic'!

For my UK fans - FREE! Five signed copies of 'Dancing Paws of Magic' to win in new Goodreads Giveaway. Go to to enter before closing date of July 22nd. Best of Luck!

Wed.14th June, 6pm UK time, great interview with Hannah Murray on Talk Radio Europe.

Dancing Paws of Magic now available for readers everywhere.

26th May. A most enjoyable interview with Marilyn Barber, Editor of the Stour & Avon Magazine. My cat Gracie and I posed for photographs and we had a lovely long chat about my life and my books.

24th May. My interview with Hannah Murray of Talk Radio Europe went really well. She was so easy to chat to making the whole experience a pleasure. She will tweet me towards the end of June when her Book Show, including my interview, is to go on air.
The radio station is especially for ex-pats living in Spain but programs can be listened to via the Internet anywhere in the world. (I don't think I 'fluffed' my words!)

Have you visited my website yet? There are stories, photos, a regularly updated blog and even a collection of my illustrations in glorious colour. Go on! Taka a peek at and ENJOY!

March 2017
Great excitement! First delivery of 'Dancing Paws of Magic' has arrived from the printers. Beat the rush and get your copy to read and enjoy now!

On Wednesday 29th May, I was back at 'A Bundle of Books' children's bookshop in Herne Bay, Kent for a 'How to' workshop on the use of illustrating with watercolour pencils. Great fun was had by children, mums, grandmas and me and some really nice pictures were produced and several copies of Introducing the Pusska Moggyinsky Ballet Company were signed and passed on to their new young readers.

On Saturday 4th. May at
'A Bundle of Books' 6 Bank St Herne Bay Kent, I told children about my own youthful ballet experiences, the animals who have inspired the characters for my story, explained with the aid of original sketches and finished watercolours how the illustrations were developed,read extracts and was delighted to sign copies for those who purchased my book.

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This is a whimsical and sweet story about a troupe of ballet dancing cats who lose the desire to dance. They have been given their talent and ambition through magic and the magic is wearing off. Thankfully the ghost of a lepremog (the feline version of a leprechaun) intervenes and recharges the magical batteries in time for a very important performance.
The cats act like normal moggies until after dark when an entire other word reveals itself. This feline version of the Russian ballet is a world worth visiting. It would be an enjoyable book for young and old. All it requires is a little magic.
I give this four purrs and two paws up.

by NetGalley Review

Magical! I loved this story! I'm a cat lover, so I may be prejudiced....! But I loved the mystery and magic and suspense of this story- and I'm a grown up- kids will love this tale.

by Catherine Hankins (NetGalley)

Magical! I loved this story! I'm a cat lover, so I may be prejudiced....! But I loved the mystery and magic and suspense of this story- and I'm a grown up- kids will love this tale.

by NetGalley Reviewer

What a delightful story! So many twists and turns and as for the characters, they are all very endearing. The ballet aspect was clearly well researched and would be of great help to any budding ballet dancers. The story was made even more interesting by the exquisite illustrations.
Although this is a book written for children, as an older reader, I found it absolutely fascinating.

by Eliza

This book is for kids who love cats and ballet. Because of the vocabulary level, I would recommend it for a good reader in grades 3-5. It would also be a great read-out-loud. There are many unusual names in Dancing Paws of Magic so a child with dyslexia may find it frustrating. This book has many chapters, but read aloud to children who love animals and funny situations, it would be delightful.

I received this book through Net Galley

by NetGalley Reviewer

An excellent book that I hope to share with my class.

by By A NetGalley Reviewer

A lovely book that children will enjoy. The story of magic and mystery based around the cat characters is a delight.

by Sarah Luxton


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