The Boy Who Walked Backwards

The Boy Who Walked Backwards is a moving story about a young Ojibway boy Leo and his family in Serpent River First Nation. Leo’s life turns to darkness when forced to attend residential school. Back home for Christmas, Leo uses inspiration from an Ojibway childhood game to deal with his struggles.

In 2015, Ben recorded and released a song called ‘The Boy Who Walked Backwards Through The Snow’. The song is a true story about an Indigenous boy who evades a return to residential school. After recording the song, Sures felt it would make an empowering children’s story and set about writing it. Illustrations for the book were made by Nicole Marie Burton and in June 2019 the story was published by The Manitoba First Nations Education Resource. The book is now in 57 First Nations Schools in Manitoba, various libraries and independent book stores across Canada. The Boy Who Walked Backwards is ‘Highly Recommended’ on the Goodminds website. Sures has appeared on Alberta and Saskatchewan province wide CBC weekend editions as well as The Next Chapter hosted by Shelagh Rogers. 


It was quite a clever and interesting story. Definitely not your normal Residential school story. And it was based on a real story to boot! Even better! Excellent and innovative YA book.

Drew Hayden Taylor, author and playwright


Tanya Tagaq

This is a challenging and beautiful story, keeping us aware of the true values in life, family and love.

Fred Penner, children’s entertainer


With his years of experience as a festival and concert performer as well as experience as a voice actor/narrator, presenting the book with the song was a natural next step in sharing this meaningful story. Presentations of the book and song can be booked for school groups from Kindergarten to Grade 9.

Presentation Description

Ben begins with opening remarks about the book, where the story came from, and what it means to the him. There will be brief questions for the kids on their knowledge of residential schools, followed by narration of the story with PDF visuals on a screen, followed by a question and answer with students and finally a performance of the song ’The Boy Who Walked Backwards Through The Snow’

Ben will be asking for a helper to turn the pages of his book which will be projected. For larger audiences or presentation spaces, Ben will be need a power outlet for his sound system.


Grades: 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9
Audience Limit: 50
Presentation Limit: 2 per half day; 4 per full day
Full day fee: $550
Half day fee: $300

Booking Form

Please complete the form below or contact to book a presentation.