I am a cat lover. My family has always had cats, and I have a lovely, rather elderly cat called Spike.
Recently I have read three books about cats. I briefly met Tom McLaughlin at the Big Green Bookshop where he was doing an event for the children. A group of small children were waiting with rapt attention for him, so I got hold of a signed copy of The Diabolical Mr Tiddles. It is wonderful.
This is still a great read. Part of the joy of the book is the freedom that 1950s children had: Rosemary and John buy and cook sausages on a gas ring and take the bus to a local cathedral town to find Mrs Cantrip's cauldron, as well as other unsupervised adventures. Sleigh's descriptions are also a joy; she describes Rosemary's plaits as flapping like "the blades of an old pair of scissors" as she hops up the kerb. As @mokuska reminded me, Carbonel is in the great tradition of grumpy magical helpers, like E. Nesbit's Psammead, and he reminded me of the magical characters of another favourite mid-20th century children's fantasy writers, Elisabeth Beresford. I wrote about her here.
This novel was followed by two more about Carbonel: The Kingdom of Carbonel and Carbonel and Calidor. Sadly they seem to be out of print but are listed at a reasonable price in the usual online shops. I have read Carbonel aloud to children of 7+, and confident readers of that age and above would enjoy reading it themselves.