The importance of education and the character development, independent of the expectations of others, is evident throughout Chinese Cinderella. Adeline manages to work her way out of her dire beginnings through her academic performance and the personality that develops from those endeavors, growing into an outstanding writer thanks to her love of Shakespeare and her passion for storytelling. Her freedom via England came through this talent and her victory in an international playwriting competition. Indeed, a recurring theme in the novel is Adeline's adamant belief that she does not want to end up like her sister, in an arranged marriage with a man twice her age. Adeline's drive to be her own person is crucial to her ultimate success, supplemented by an unquenchable thirst for knowledge.
Reiniger had a distinct art style in her animations that was very different from other artists in the time period of the 1920s and the 1930s, particularly in terms of characters. In the 1920s especially, characters tended to rely on facial expressions to express emotions or action, while Reiniger's characters relied on gestures to display emotions or actions. She also utilized the technique of metamorphosis often in her animations. This focus on transformation greatly benefits her tendency to work with fairytale stories. Because of this, Reiniger's characters are not usually biologically correct, but they are able to express a fluidity which is very important to her style of expressionism. Although there are other animators in that time period that used these techniques, Reiniger stands out because she is able to accomplish this style using cutout animation.  Reiniger's figures resemble stop-motion animation in the way that they move.