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Literature / Theater Shoes

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Theater Shoes (originally released as Curtain Up in the U.K.) is a children's novel by Noel Streatfeild. It is about three children, Sorrel, Mark, and Holly Forbes, living in London in 1940s England with their actress grandmother while their father is listed as Missing in Action by the Navy. Together they are being trained for the stage, with varying degrees of success.

Tropes in this work:

  • Alpha Bitch: Miranda.
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  • Ambiguously Jewish: Miriam and Mose Cohen are very Jewish names but their Judaism never comes up. A bit strange considering the World War II setting.
  • Apron Matron: A staple in Streatfeild books. Hannah and Alice.
  • Bratty Half-Pint: Both Mark and Holly can be this to Sorrel.
  • Breaking the Fellowship: The story ends with Sorrel and Holly set on the verge of going into acting professionally and comedy, respectively, whereas Mark has decided he wants nothing to do with singing or anything else in entertainment.
  • Child Prodigy: Miriam.
  • Grande Dame: Margaret Shaw, the Forbes' maternal grandmother.
  • The Heart: Sorrel is this to her younger siblings. Alternatively, Hannah to the three Forbes.
  • Insistent Terminology: Mark insists the three are Forbes not Warrens.
  • It's All About Me: Miranda.
  • The Lost Lenore: The Forbes' dead mother, Adeline Warren.
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  • Our Fairies Are Different: Francis Brain's costuming for Ariel is decidedly different than Sorrel hoped for.
  • Parental Abandonment: The Forbes' mother is dead and their father is listed as "missing in action".
  • Shrinking Violet: Sorrel learns to grow out of this a bit.
  • Spell My Name with an "S": The author's last name completely defies the I before E except after C rule.
  • The 'Verse: The Shoesverse, perhaps? Many of Streatfeild's book featured a character in situations pertaining to dance.