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Circus Shoes (Shoes #3)

3.77 of 5 stars 3.77  ·  rating details  ·  574 ratings  ·  30 reviews
Threatened with life in separate orphanages when their aunt dies, two children run away to search for their uncle who works for a circus and find that they can become a part of the hard work and colorful performances of the tenting season.
Paperback, 0 pages
Published September 1st 1985 by Yearling (first published 1938)
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Community Reviews

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LH Johnson
Noel Streatfield had a handle on what made "working" children tick. Her sympathetic portrayal of characters who take to the stage, the circus, the ice-rink, is consistently smart and realistic. Circus Shoes is no exception. Peter and his rather splendidly named sister Santa face an uncertain future following certain events and as a result of this, they quite literally run away to the circus. What's more realistic for me and appealing in this story is Peter. Santa's ultimate fate is somewhat inev ...more
I read this as a kid, but I think just one time. (There's a book personality test for you! Does "just one time" mean something to you or do you read virtually all books just one time?)

Anyway, I like this as a story of belonging. That's the aspect that stuck with me all the years. (view spoiler)
Okay book. Lots of charming details. Nothing, however, *happens*.
I first heard of Noel Streatfeild when I checked out the movie version of Ballet Shoes from the library. After watching it, I figured I should read the book. After reading it and its sequel Theater Shoes, I stumbled upon Circus Shoes. This isn't Streatfeild's best book, Ballet and Theater Shoes are by far much better, though does deserve credit.

Peter and Santa (like most of Streatfeild's main characters) are orphans. Their parents died in a railway accident, and they live with their Aunt Rebecc
Jane Irish Nelson
When their Aunt Rebecca who raised them dies, orphans Peter and Santa are to be sent to separate orphanages. But they've never been apart in their lives. Instead Peter suggest they run away and find their uncle Gus. They are very surprised to find that he is an artiste in a circus. Both children have much to learn about life and their place in the world, as they spend six months traveling with the circus.
'The Circus is Coming' (also known as 'Circus Shoes') is the story of Peter and Santa, an orphaned brother and sister who live with their rather strict and snobbish aunt. It's set, I suppose, in the middle of the 20th century. When the aunt dies, it looks as though the children may have to be sent to ophanages. So they decide to go and find their uncle Gus, the black sheep of the family. What they hadn't realised is that he's an artiste in a circus.

The book is about Peter and Santa learning to p
Stayed up late last night to finish this book. Loved it! I love the different 'voices' of her characters and the way she presented the circus family. As a lover of animals, I'm always a bit leary of books about animals since I'm sure one or more will die, and I'll be devastated. I loved the way the circus people explained to Peter and Santa that the horses, dogs, elephants, sea lions, lions had 'moods' as do humans, and talk to each other even if we can't understand them etc etc etc.

I was kind o
I have been curious about this author since watching "You've Got Mail". Meg Ryan's character mentions the book Ballet Shoes by Noel Streatfeild. When I ran across this old copy of Circus Shoes I wanted to see why she would list it as a classic children's novel. As it turns out it was typical of books I read as a child. This is the second older book I have read that reads a little bit like a how to book. Without the ease of the internet readers depended on books to get information unlike a reader ...more
One of my favorite Streatfeild books, definitely. It's a shame it's not as well known as the others, though there is a bit too much stuffed into the last chapter.
Zen Cho
Oh, Noel Streatfeild, how I love you. I've been wanting to read this ever since I knew of its existence. Yay for reprints! It's not exactly claimed a place with White Boots and Ballet Shoes as a favourite Streatfeild book, but it's one of her better ones. I like the unsentimentality of Gus's character. While it was great watching Peter develop, I was a little disappointed with Santa's character progression; I liked her and felt more could have been done with her. I don't think she really chang ...more
We enjoyed this. It's an old story (published 1938) and pretty long, but not inaccessible. Essentially, a brother and sister are orphaned and run away to find an uncle who works in a traveling circus. The children start out pretty naive and selfish but learn the value of community, hard work and courage by living alongside the group of circus performers and their families.
Recently reading Water for Elephants made this book a little bit more fun. It wasn't amazing, and it wasn't terrible. And I never could quite get over the fact that the main female character's name was Santa. What the ???? Some fun details about circus life, and I did like the way the kids grew up over the course of the story.
Keeping it, simply because my copy is an older edition with a fabulous dust jacket.
Probably my favorite of Streatfeild's "Shoes" books that I have read, as it is the least formulaic.
Morticia Adams
It was called The Circus is Coming when I read it. I don't get that every book by Noel STreatfeild on Good Reads has been changed to include "shoes" in the title, presumably for the sake of symmetry with the two she wrote called Tennis Shoes and Ballet Shoes - totally dumb and unnecessary!

Anyway, Noel Streatfeild was my Enid Blyton (whom everyone else loved but I hated) when I was young - I loved nearly all her books (I do remember one absolute stinker though)
A well-written novel about some kids who are taught to think of themselves as better and smarter than others but are actually quite ignorant and prideful. Due to their silly aunt's death,they go to live with their uncle in the circus and learn the truth about themselves,and as a result,become better kids than they were plus they learn to work hard at learning a talent so that they can stay with their uncle and the circus,which they like.
Hooray, another new Noel Streatfeild for me! This one I absolutely loved. Such a charming, quick read. Peter isn't always likeable but he's at least interesting, and often mockable. I'm still wondering what Santa could possibly be short for too! The adventure getting to the circus was so much fun to read about, as was seeing the children fitting in - or otherwise. ;)
Threatened with life in separate orphanages when their aunt dies, two children run away to search for their uncle who works for a circus. There they learn that they can become a part of the hard work and colorful circus life, and perhaps find a lasting home.

Kymm Zuckert
Re-read, though so long ago I barely remember it. This is a great one, I really loved it.
All of the romance of the circus stripped away, all of the hard work laid bare. I like how Streatfeild shows how people think, especially when they're thinking unflattering or unkind things. Enjoyable as ever; now I need another one!
I read this book years ago. While it's not my favorite of Streatfeild's books it still has a certain charm. The sibling pair share many similar characteristics to children in her other books & the circus setting has its appeal as well.
Interesting but sad stories about the animals and a sea lion with a bizarre name: Hitler.
The book was published in 1939. I understand why this book was so hard to find, most librarians would not approve.
Maureen E
It wasn’t her best, but it was a little less predictable than, say, Family Shoes. There was one passage about Pascha that I loved, even if Streatfeild got a few facts wrong. [Mar. 2010]
All of Streatfeild's books have that sort of Dickensesque, Little Orphan Annie feel to them and this one is particularly high on the poor little waif factor.
This may actually be one of my least favorite Streatfeilds. The children are ok, but the book is short so no one is particularly well drawn in this story.
It was interesting, and very grabbing! The beginning can get dull, but it all becomes so catching, you can't stop reading!
This isn't the right edition (the one I got was 1939, I think). Medium condition, smelled strongly of smoke.
Rachel Cooper
I am continuing my quest to relive my childhood through my favourite books :)
simplistic and sweet, fun circus flavor, try more by author
the other one was good soo....
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Mary Noel Streatfeild, known as Noel Streatfeild, was an author best known and loved for her children's books, including Ballet Shoes and Circus Shoes. She was born on Christmas Eve, 1895, the daughter of William Champion Streatfeild and Janet Venn and the second of six children to be born to the couple. Sister Ruth was the oldest, after Noel came Barbara, William ('Bill'), Joyce (who died of TB p ...more
More about Noel Streatfeild...

Other Books in the Series

Shoes (1 - 10 of 11 books)
  • Ballet Shoes (Shoes, #1)
  • Tennis Shoes (Shoes, #2)
  • Theater Shoes (Shoes, #4)
  • Party Shoes (Shoes, #5)
  • Movie Shoes (Shoes, #6)
  • Skating Shoes (Shoes, #7)
  • Family Shoes (Shoes, #8)
  • Dancing Shoes (Shoes, #9)
  • Traveling Shoes (Shoes, #11)
  • New Shoes (Shoes, #10)
Ballet Shoes (Shoes, #1) Theater Shoes (Shoes, #4) Dancing Shoes (Shoes, #9) Skating Shoes (Shoes, #7) Movie Shoes (Shoes, #6)

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