Friday, January 7, 2022

Is it Winter Yet?

 A Sled for Gabo 
by Emma Otheguy; illus. by Ana Ramírez González 
40 pages; ages 4-8
Atheneum Books for Young Readers, 2021  

theme: friendship, winter

The day it snowed Gabo followed the whistling sound of an old steam radiator into the kitchen.

All the other kids are outside sledding. But Gabo doesn’t have a sled. He doesn’t have warm boots or wool socks or a winter hat, either. But Mami is a problem-solver. With many pairs of socks and plastic bags tied over his sneakers, Gabo is ready to go play in the snow. But first, he wants to find a sled.

What I like about this book: I like how Gabo goes to neighbors to see if they have a sled he can borrow. They don’t have a sled, but offer him other things. Eventually he does get something that will slide down the hill, and in the process makes a new friend.  I also like that the opening spreads show Mami and Papi cooking something on the stove: a can in a pot of water. And at the end, Papi cranks open the can and Gabo and his new friend grab spoons and dive into the Dulce de Leche. 

I also like the illustrations. Ana Ramírez González captures the expression of Gabo’s thrill and joy of riding down a hill perfectly! 

Beyond the Books:

People use all kinds of things to slide down a hill, from plastic saucers to lunch trays. What sorts of things could you use to slide down a hill if you don’t have a sled? Try some of them out and see how they work.

Make some Dulce de Leche (cooked sweet milk). You can do it in a can like Gabo’s Mami. Here’s how.

No boots? Try this. The trick to keeping your feet warm when all you’ve got is sneakers to wear on a snowy day is to insulate. Grandma used to grab bread bags to put over our socks. Here’s how to do it: Get two pair of knee socks (or socks that go up your calf a little bit). Put one sock on your foot. Put your foot inside a bread bag. Now pull the second sock over the bread-bagged foot. Put your foot in your sneaker and lace it up. Now do the same for your other foot. Go. Play in the snow. 

Today we're joining Perfect Picture Book Friday, an event where bloggers share great picture books at Susanna Leonard Hill's website. Review copy is from my local library system.


  1. I love this book. I've been known to cover my shoes in plastic bags and slide down hills on cardboard. Great rec!

  2. Sliding on trays--oh yes! So fun to get a new perspective on playing in the snow!

  3. Great book for the snowy beginning of 2022. Trays, cardboard, old tarps,and even your own belly. I watched a 3 year old go down on her belly, b/c sleds scared her! She had a blast. Thanks Sue.

  4. Looks like fun! Loved reading the sledding comments too!

  5. This sounds like a fun book. Thanks for the review.