It may not be true but it could be – this story of how a single white stone came to be in the wall surrounding Casa Loma, the magnificient medieval castle that stands in the middle of Toronto.
John Tommy Fiddich lives in Yorkville, tends the family vegetable patch, and considers himself the “luckiest boy in town.” When a hailstorm wipes out the vegetables, he goes from being the luckiest to the unluckiest. Then word gets out that Henry Pellatt, the eccentric millionaire who brought light to the city and built Casa Loma, is offering one dollar for brown stones to place in the wall going up around the castle. After trudging through the city all day with his stone, John reaches the castle only to find that rain has washed it white. But Henry Pellatt accepts the stone for his wall, rewarding John for his hard work, making him again “the luckiest boy in town.”
The trip through the streets of Toronto, from Yorkville to Casa Loma, makes for a book as enchanting to young and old as the fabulous castle that inspired it.
About Sheldon Oberman
As an award-winning writer, teacher, performer, playwright, and filmmaker, Sheldon Oberman was a dynamo of creative activity. An educator for more than twenty years, he was a member of the Manitoba Writers’ Guild; the Manitoba Association of Playwrights; the Winnipeg Film Group; the Society of Children’s Book Writers and Illustrators; the Canadian Society for Children’s Authors, Illustrators and Performers; and the Society of Composers, Authors, and Music Publishers of Canada. Sheldon is the author of the many critically-acclaimed books, including The Always Prayer Shawl, By the Hanukkah Light, TV Sal and the Game Show from Outer Space, and The Lion and the Lake: A French English Alphabet Book, which won the International Silver Medal from the Leipsig Book Fair. Sheldon’s fascination with the single white stone in the wall around historic Casa Loma in Toronto led to his wonderful children’s book, The White Stone in the Castle Wall. This book was a finalist for the Ruth Schwartz Children’ s Literature Award, the McNally Robinson Book of the Year Award, and the Elizabeth Mrazik-Cleaver Canadian Picture Book Award. The father of three children, Sheldon lived for many years in Winnipeg, Manitoba. He traveled throughout Canada and the United States as a storyteller and a speaker for schools, communities, and conferences.
Sheldon Oberman died in March, 2004.
About Les Tait
Les Tait has been painting the streets of Toronto for many years, and his love of the city is apparent in his attention to detail. His first book, The White Stone in the Castle Wall by Sheldon Oberman, was a finalist for the Ruth Schwartz Children's Book Award - a prize given by a panel of children.