The Definitive Guide to

Let's Go, Hugo!

Written and illustrated by Angela Dominguez
- Bookroo Rating
Goodreads Rating - 3.8 / 5.0
List Price
Target Age
Book Type

What Does Bookroo Think of Let's Go, Hugo!

“A charming Parisian tale of friendship and facing fears.”

In this story of overcoming fears and friendship, Hugo is a good-natured, yellow bird living in Paris. He prefers to live life on the ground, and he certainly knows how to make the most of it: eating popcorn, playing in drinking fountains, and watching ballet performances. When his new friend Lulu tires of these terrestrial activities, she discovers the true reason for Hugo’s earthbound life—he doesn’t know how to fly. Dominguez brings a delightful illustration style to the tale with ink, water colors, and paper texturing. Lulu’s style is disappointingly generic when compared to Hugo’s pizzazz. While he wears a classy plaid scarf and sports a stylish pencil moustache, Lulu has standard issue pink feathers with pink bows and long eyelashes. The Parisian setting is depicted with transportive detail in the architecture of buildings and the style and activities of characters that will delight and inspire readers who dream of a trip to Paris. The full page spread providing a literal bird’s eye view of the city of lights as Hugo soars along with Lulu is superb, particularly thanks to Dominguez’s insightful decision to leave the page wordless so readers, like Hugo, pause to take in the view. Easter eggs await in the endpapers and emphasize the attention to detail in the story.

What's Let's Go, Hugo! About

Publisher Summary

Hugo is a dapper little bird who adores the Eiffel Tower—or at least his view of it from down here. Hugo, you see, has never left the ground. So when he meets another bird, the determined Lulu, who invites him to fly with her to the top of the tower, Hugo stalls, persuading Lulu to see, on foot, every inch of the park in which he lives instead. Will a nighttime flying lesson from Bernard the Owl, some sweet and sensible encouragement from Lulu, and some extra pluck from Hugo himself finally give this bird the courage he needs to spread his wings and fly?

What Kind of Book is Let's Go, Hugo!

Video Gallery

Quotes from Let's Go, Hugo!

  • "There were many ups . . . and many more downs."
  • "The Eiffel Tower was more beautiful than Hugo had ever imagined. So beautiful, he forgot to be afraid."

What Questions Should I Ask My Child

  • Lulu recognizes the structure Hugo is building. She suggests they fly together to go see it, but Hugo makes excuses for why he can’t join her. Why is Hugo making excuses?

  • Let’s Go Hugo! is set in Paris. The illustrations of the story depict fun aspects of life in Paris, including activities, buildings, and food. What would you like to do, see, or eat if you visited Hugo’s city?

Trusted Reviews & Ratings

Mr. Staccato
Spent many carefree hours hunting clues with the Hardy boys and defending Redwall Abbey.
B is for Bookworm
Human Development Degree, Book-loving aunt

Hugo is a bird that’s afraid to fly. I love this story, because he faces his fears and ends up so happy once he’s learned how to fly. I also love that he has such wonderful friends along the way that help him practice and help him through his nerves when he’s scared. Sometimes it’s helpful to have friends that can help you to overcome your fears. :) Plus, the illustrations in this story based in Paris are gorgeous!

The Goodfather
Husband. Father. Children's Book Critic Extraordinaire:)

This fanciful tale of friendship and courage is terrific. The whimsical illustrations, the Paris setting, Hugo’s never ending excuses—it all combines to create a favorite around our home.

Mom of Boys
Three little boys who love books about dragons, whangdoodles and magic.
Lemony Snickers
Reading contracts all day long. Not bad, but not quite as fun as reading about hobbits.

Let’s Go, Hugo! is a fantastic picture book. Hugo, a bird who’s comfortable living at ground level and scared of flying is pretty happy with his life. But he meets a friend, Lulu, who tells him that the Eiffel Tower is just a small flight away, and Hugo would love to see it. The illustrations are adorable, and the book has a fantastic message about being courageous and trying something new and scary. Hugo doesn’t overcome his fear alone, and the book also highlights excellent friends, Iike Lulu, who show care and kindness to help Hugo overcome his fear.

Readerly Mom
Bay Area mother of two, world traveler, book lover, picky reader

Hugo the Parisian bird is very happy on the ground, until one day he makes a friend who encourages him to fly. This book has a cute story about trying new things and stretching ourselves beyond our comfort zones. However, I’ll admit that I’m a biased Francophile—the illustrations of scenes around Paris are my favorite part.

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Who Wrote Let's Go, Hugo!

author & illustrator
Angela Dominguez

Angela Dominguez was born in Mexico City, grew up in the great state of Texas, and now resides on the East Coast. She is the author and illustrator of several books for children including the Pura Belpré Illustration Honor books Maria Had a Little Llama and Mango, Abuela, and Me. When Angela is not in her studio, she teaches at the Academy of Art University. She also enjoys presenting at different schools and libraries to all sorts of ages. Angela is a proud member of SCBWI, PEN America, and represented by Wernick & Pratt Literary Agency. As a child, she loved reading books and making a mess creating pictures. She’s delighted to still be doing both.

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What Has Angela Dominguez Said About Let's Go, Hugo!

  • Where did the idea for Let’s Go Hugo! originally come from?

    Funnily enough, it all began with a windup chicken toy. My mom sent me one in college for Easter. He became my little mascot. I would windup him up and say “Look at you go, Hugo.” Later in graduate school, I depicted him in an illustration as a yellow bird with a red scarf.

    A few years later, I revisited Hugo and did a series of illustrations. I was just trying to revamp my portfolio. My agent, Linda Pratt, was one though who saw that a story was emerging. She encouraged me to write my first picture book.

    Writing the actual story was surprisingly easy. I based much of Hugo on where I was personally in my life. Like Hugo, I was content, but I wasn’t taking chances and I was letting fear get in the way. I wanted to take a big leap except mine revolved around writing not flying. Lulu represented for me what a great friend can do. And of course, I had to set it in Paris because Hugo is so debonair.

Angela Dominguez's Book Dedication

Dedicated to my mom, family, friends, students, Lily, Jess, Linda, and of course Paris!

What Do Critics Say About Let's Go, Hugo!

  • Kirkus Reviews

    “The book charms from the start, but Dominguez excels with her slow revelation of Hugo’s qualms. When readers first meet Hugo, his on-the-ground life appears to be one of choice, not one forced by fear, so this neatly introduces children to the truth that people find ways to hide their fears . . . “

    Read full review >>
  • Publishers Weekly

    “[I]n her first outing as both author and illustrator, [Dominguez] lets this tale about facing one’s fears unfold through wordy, literal insights . . . “

    Read full review >>
What famous structure is Hugo building that Lulu recognizes?
  1. The Statue of Liberty
  2. The Eiffel Tower
  3. The Leaning Tower of Pisa
  4. Stonehenge
Take the Full Quiz!

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Book Details

ISBN 10:
ISBN 13:
Publication Date:
January 1, 2013
Text Details:
Text set in Joppa.
Illustration Details:
This artwork was created with love with Canson paper, ink, tissue paper on Strathmore illustration board.