Publication History

Other Editions
(by Random House)

1954. Library Binding. Random House Children's Books.

1965: Cloth. Random House. No illustrations.

1979: Paperback. Dell "A Yearling Book" (an imprint of Random House), no illustrations.

1991. Cloth. Random House Children's Books. With illustrations by Diane Goode. (see examples below)

1993. Paperback. Random House Children's Books (1st Bullseye Books edition.)

1993. Cloth. Random House Value Publishing.

2003. Paperback. Random House Children's Books. No illustrations.

1991 cover, ill. by Diane Goode
'Posy came in with nothing on but the bathmat.'
Editions from Other Publishers

1936: Cloth. London: J.M. Dent and Sons, illustrations by Ruth Gervis.

1937: Eau Claire, WI: E.M. Hale (Special Edition).

1949: Paperback. Hammondsworth, Middlesex England: Penguin Books "A Puffin Story Book."
Illustrations by Ruth Gervis.

1962: Cloth. England: Pennant Books/Dent.

1977: London, England: J.M. Dent and Sons (Premier's Reading Challenge Series)

1986. Cloth. Magnolia, MA: Peter Smith Publisher, Inc.

1987, 1991: Mass market paperback. England: Puffin.

1993. Reinforced Binding. San Val, Inc.

1994. Paperback. England: Puffin (Puffin Modern Classics). Illustrated by Piers Sandford.

2004. Cloth. London: Orion Children's Books.

2004. Paperback. England: Puffin.

2009. The Folio Society.

Information gathered from WorldCat, Fantastic Fiction, and Books in Print.
Last Date in Print
January 2011 (75th anniversary edition of British publication)
As best as I can tell, Ballet Shoes has never been out of print.

Total Copies Sold
Angela Bull's 1984 biography of Streatfeild notes that ten million copies had been sold. That was 26 years ago, so I'm sure the figure is a good bit higher.

Advertising Copy



[5th one listed]


By Noel Streatfeild

[This area is difficult to decipher - perhaps it was folded when scanned? but this is my best guess.] A story of three girls who studied for the stage and made good.  – Illustrated, $2.00

Other Promotion

Although I did not find information about how Ballet Shoes  was promoted in the United States, Streatfeild recalls how it was displayed in a London store, Bumpus' Bookshop in Oxford Street. She recalls, "a sight met my eyes that astounded me. One entire window was given up to piles of my book and around the window like a frieze hung pink ballet shoes, with a pair of Karsavina's shoes as the centre-piece. I can see myself staring and staring, a whole window to my book --it couldn't be true." (Bull, 137.) Bull goes on to note that "child dancers from the Mayfair School of Dancing were photographed for publicity material, and Noel herself chose a ten-year-old redhead to represent Posy. She afterwards became famous as the ballerina Moira Shearer." (Bull, 138). In 1979, Argo published an audio version of Ballet Shoes  read by Shearer.

Ballet Shoes was briefly mentioned in the 1997 film, You've Got Mail. Meg Ryan plays Kathleen Kelly, an independent children's bookstore owner in New York City whose livelihood is threatened when a huge Fox Books chain store opens nearby. In this scene she walks into the megastore one evening after deciding to close her beloved store. She overhears a customer request the "shoe" books, at which the young store employee is baffled. She then volunteers the information, giving her personal recommendations, and even spelling Streatfeild's name, which is definitely a challenge! This incident clearly establishes her character's authority as a children's book expert.

Other Media

Ballet Shoes has been published in a variety of media, including:
  • Ballet. Sadler's Wells/London Children's Ballet, April 22-25, 2010.
  • E-book. Random House Audio Publishing Group, 2009. NetLibrary.
  • Audiobook (CD). Read by Elizabeth Sastre. Random House Audio Publishing Group, 2008.
  • Film (DVD). Koch Entertainment, 2008.
  • AudioCassette. Read by Elizabeth Sastre. Random House Audio Publishing Group, 2004.
  • Audiobook (CD) Read by Elizabeth Sastre. Books on Tape, Inc., 2004.
  • Radio Full Cast Dramatisation, originally aired on BBC radio in December 1999. Available on CD and e-audiobook (2008).
  • Audiobook. Read by Harriet Walter. England: BBC Spoken Word, 1995.
  • Audiobook (cassette).Read by Jan Francis. England: Listen for Pleasure & Australia: EMI Records, 1987.
  • Audiobook (cassette). Abridgement by Noel Streatfeild. Read by Moira Shearer. England: Argo, 1979, 1984.
  • Film. Richmond Hill, Ontario: BBC Television (originally aired on BBC television) 1975.
  • Radio. Script by Felicity Douglas. England: BBC Children's Hour, 1947.

Ballet Shoes on the big screen

Cover of the 1975 BBC production, now available on DVD.
These covers are from the 2008 film starring Emma Watson as Pauline.


Ballet Shoes has been translated into several languages:

  • Croatian (Zagreb: Algoritam, 2004)
  • German (Ballettschuhe translated by Irmela Brendar, Carlsen Verlag, 2009)
  • Hebrew (Tel-Aviv: Yedi'ot aharonot: Sifre hemed, 2006)
  • Polish (Warszawa: Oficyna Wydawnicza Rytm, 1999, 2002, 2005)

and  published in Braille (Braille Writing Association of South Australia)

Sequels or Prequels

There is not a direct sequel to Ballet Shoes. The characters in Ballet Shoes make brief appearances in a few other books, as noted on Harriet Jordan's Noel Streatfeild website:

"What Happened to Pauline, Petrova and Posy" is a short story in which we are told "a little about the way things turned out for the three girls".

Another short story, "Coralie", features Doctor Smith and Doctor Jakes, and has Pauline in a peripheral role.

In Curtain Up, [Theater Shoes in the US] Pauline, Petrova and Posy arrange for three children to have scholarships to The Children's Academy of Dancing and Stage Training. Although the three Fossils do not appear in person, they do write letters to the scholarship holders. Madame Fidolia and Miss Jay appear at the school, as does Pauline's friend Winifred, who is now a teacher.

In The Painted Garden, [abridged and published as Movie Shoes in the US] one of the characters has been a student at the Children's Academy, and meets Pauline and Posy in America.

One of the characters in Apple Bough trains under Madame Fidolia at the Children's Academy.

Aside from this, Ballet Shoes has no connections to the other "shoes" books.
(Jordan, Ballet Shoes, 10/20/10)

Streatfeild’s other books sometimes had shoes in the title, and when published in America, those with different titles were often retitled with “shoes” in the title! So these books may outwardly seem like a series, but actually have little or no connection with one another in terms of plot and characters. 


"Ballet Shoes" Fantastic Fiction. Fantastic Fiction Ltd. 2010. Web. 10 Oct. 2010.<>

"Ballet Shoes" LibraryThing. Web. 11 Oct. 2010. <>

"Ballet Shoes." Random House. Web. 9 Oct. 2010. <>

Bull, Angela. Noel Streatfeild. London: Collins, 1984. Print.

Display Ad 150-No Title. The New York Times.12 Dec. 1937: 130. Proquest Historical Newspapers New York Times (1851-2007) w/Index (1851-1993). Web. 14 Oct. 2010.

Jordan, Harriet. Noel Streatfeild. Web. 4 April 2004. <> September - November 2010.

Worldcat. OCLC Online Computer Library Center. 2001- 2010. Web. 9 Oct. 2010. <>