M. G. Leonard is an award winning, bestselling writer of children's books. Her beetle books have sold in thirty-seven countries and she is currently working with Nevision, writing the screenplay for a TV series based on the trilogy. Previously, she worked as a digital media producer for the National Theatre, Harry Potter West End, the Royal Opera House and Shakespeare’s Globe. She spent her early career in the music industry running Setanta Records, an independent record label, and managing bands, most notably The Divine Comedy. After leaving the music industry, she trained as an actor, dabbling in directing and producing as well as performing, before deciding to write her stories down. Maya lives in Brighton with her husband and two sons.


Beetle Boy was published in Spring 2016 by Chicken House in the UK, Scholastic in the US, Canada and Australia and has sold in thirty-nine territories, becoming a bestseller in the UK and the Netherlands, winning the 2017 Branford Boase Award for best debut children's novel and the Sheffield Children's Book Award 2017 for shorter novel as well as being longlisted for the Carnegie Medal.

Beetle Queen, the second part of the trilogy, was published in April 2017 in the UK to critical acclaim and has been nominated for the Carnegie medal.

Battle of the Beetles, the third part of the trilogy, was published 1 February 2018.

The Bug Hunters - a short story in the collection Make More Noise, was published 1 February 2018.

The Beetle Collector's Handbook, a non-fiction companion to the trilogy, is published 6 September 2018.

The Vanishing World, a contemporary fairy tale about climate change, will be published in October 2019.

The Highland Falcon, the first in a new series of Adventures on Trains, will be published in spring 2020.


Above, The Royal Ballet Company and legendary choreographer Peter Wright, after a performance of Giselle with Beetle Boy.

Right, Neil Hannon of The Divine Comedy with Maya in 1996, shooting the cover image for the album Casanova. Photo: Kevin Westenberg

“IT’S FAB! Beetle Boy is full of musty professors, hideous villains, secret hideouts and heroic insects... I can’t wait for the next one!”
— Neil Hannon, The Divine Comedy