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Let’s Go!

by Julie Flett

Julie Flett (Credit: Courtney Molyneaux)

Let’s Go! by Cree-Métis artist and author Julie Flett is a lovingly illustrated picture book about skateboarding and community. The book’s narrator is a Cree boy, enchanted by the older kids he sees skateboarding past his home and in the park. When his mother gives him her old skateboard, he sets out to learn the sport, persevering despite multiple falls. Practise pays off, though, and he and his mother go to the skatepark where – after a bout of initial nervousness – the boy makes friends with other kids his age who also love skateboarding, and together they say, “haw êkwa! Let’s go!”

Flett’s tactile, collaged illustrations are soft and warm. Even when the focus of an image is asphalt, Flett highlights it with green grass and purple wind. Instead of a stark white, her backgrounds tend to be beige, adding an extra glow to each page. Paired with the gentle, poetic nature of Flett’s prose, Let’s Go! likely defies what many readers will expect from a book about skateboarding. The book is lyrical – “sometimes we skate down the street, like a little river, together” – and well-suited for reading aloud. Flett’s focus on getting back up when you fall down and the support and comfort of being part of a community should appeal to even ardent skateboard detractors.

Illustration: Julie Flett.

Throughout the book, the narrator keeps telling himself and his friends “haw êkwa!” a Cree idiom that means “okay then!” Flett provides a pronunciation guide at the start of the book, and expands on the meaning of haw êkwa! (and her relationship to skateboarding) in an author’s note. The note also includes a few additional words of Cree vocabulary – including possible translations for “skateboard” into Cree. Let’s Go! is ultimately a book about finding community and learning to be comfortable expressing yourself. It is an excellent read aloud that will appeal to parents, librarians, and teachers alike, so haw êkwa! Let’s go!


Reviewer: Allison Mills

Publisher: Greystone Kids


Price: $23.95

Page Count: 44 pp

Format: Cloth

ISBN: 978-1-77164-610-9

Released: May

Issue Date: June 2024

Categories: Kids’ Books, Picture Books

Age Range: 3–8