A beautifully written story on friendship, grief, loss, and healing with a generous helping of mystery and suspense thrown into the mix. Every character and environment is poppin'-off-the-page real, to the point where I could almost feel the muggy Georgia summer, even though it was 25* out and my hands were frozen numb from holding the book. (I couldn't put it down after I picked it back up.)— From Avery
“Readers will be riveted.” —Publishers Weekly (starred review)
The Ethan I Was Before is an award-winning story of love and loss, wonder and adventure, and ultimately of hope.
Lost in the Sun meets The Thing About Jellyfish in Ali Standish’s breathtaking debut. A poignant middle grade novel of friendship and forgiveness, this is a classic in the making.
Ethan had been many things. He was always ready for adventure and always willing to accept a dare, especially from his best friend, Kacey. But that was before. Before the accident that took Kacey from him. Before his family moved from Boston to the small town of Palm Knot, Georgia.
Palm Knot may be tiny, but it’s the home of possibility and second chances. It’s also home to Coralee, a girl with a big personality and even bigger stories. Coralee may be just the friend Ethan needs, except Ethan isn’t the only one with secrets. Coralee’s are catching up with her, and what she’s hiding might be putting both their lives at risk.
Okra Pick (Southern Independent Booksellers Alliance) * Indie Introduce Pick * Indie Next Pick * Goodreads Choice Award Semifinalist * Carnegie Medal Longlist Title * Southern Book Prize Longlist Title * A Bank Street Best Book of the Year * A Children's Book Review Best Book of the Year * Georgia Children's Book Award Nominee * Recipient of the North Carolina Young People's Literature Award
Ali Standish grew up in North Carolina and spent several years as an educator in the Washington, DC, public school system. She has an MFA in children’s writing from Hollins University and an MPhil in children’s literature from the University of Cambridge. She lives with her Finnish husband and rescue dog in Cambridge, England. The Ethan I Was Before is her debut novel and is followed by August Isle. You can visit her online at www.alistandish.com and @AliStandish on Twitter.