Once a Wizard

A story about finding a way through loss


Author Curtis L. Wiebe

Price: $20.99

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Books will be shipped in early December



This wordless children’s book has beautiful imagery and the potential to create many imaginative storylines. It empowers children to tell their own stories and explore the meaning of their own experiences of loss. The book includes helpful tips, questions, and activities to support parents and caregivers as they help children navigate their way through loss.

About the Story

While attending Uncle Wizard’s funeral, Ari sees some striking images: a snow-covered statue that resembles Uncle Wizard, a memorial candle with his picture on it, and his body displayed in an open casket. That night, Ari meets Uncle Wizard in a dream. Together, they embark on an adventure through a snowy land, encountering a magic candle, a living stuffed toy, and a goblin, before finally meeting an unstoppable giant. Through this journey, Ari learns to explore their feelings and awakens with the comfort that their memories of Uncle Wizard will live on.

Why a Wordless Book?

From a helping and counseling perspective, having no words allows young readers to help tell the story. Children can fill in details of the story that reflect their own experiences and imagination. Children will often see very different things in the story than adults do. This allows for different kinds of conversations that are useful for supporting children at various stages of grieving.

It is often difficult to know how to discuss grief and loss with children. Reading a story together can be a proactive way of inviting a conversation and letting them know it is okay to feel different emotions, have questions, and talk about them.

Curtis L. Wiebe, Author

Curtis is a sculptor, animator, award-winning filmmaker, costume designer, puppeteer, and musician, but his first love has always been drawing. He has worked with children in a variety of settings and currently teaches art to middle-years students at the Winnipeg Art Gallery. He lives in Winnipeg, Manitoba, with his wife and son. This is his first published book.


Vicki Enns, Clinical Consultant

Photo of Vicki Enns, Clinical Director; Crisis and Trauma Resource Institute Inc.Vicki worked closely with Curtis to create a book that would be both interesting for children and helpful for them to explore the topic of grief. She is the Clinical Director of the Crisis & Trauma Resource Institute (CTRI) and a registered Marriage and Family Therapist. She is the editor and co-author of the book Counseling Insights and the author and editor of many of CTRI’s training materials