Cooper Bartholomew is Dead

Rebecca James

Cooper Bartholomew is Dead
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Cooper Bartholomew is Dead

Rebecca James

Cooper Bartholomew’s body is found at the foot of a cliff.


That’s the official finding, that’s what everyone believes. Cooper’s girlfriend, Libby, has her doubts. They’d been happy, in love. Why would he take his own life?

As Libby searches for answers, and probes more deeply into what really happened the day Cooper died, she and her friends unravel a web of deception and betrayal. Are those friends - and enemies - what they seem? Who is hiding a dangerous secret? And will the truth set them all free?

A gripping new novel from the author of Beautiful Malice and Sweet Damage.


Australian author Rebecca James writes with the sort of sharp, unpretentious style that makes her books seem straightforward when actually this is a difficult story to pull off. In her third novel – part romance, part thriller – she gives us four different points of view. There are Cooper and Libby, pitched as the ‘good guys’, and Sebastian and Claire, who are moodier, suspicious characters.

To start out knowing that the romantic hero of the novel is already dead is potentially challenging. The story is concerned with unfolding the hows and whys of Cooper’s death. That I felt completely invested in the romance between Cooper and Libby was my favourite aspect of the novel. There’s a brilliant to-ing and fro-ing going on: one minute you’re deep in a romantic story and the next you’re wrenched out of it by a reminder that their relationship has been cut short. The points of view switch regularly, which makes for a cracking pace. Misconceptions formed in high school are brought to light as the characters live through those slightly adrift post-graduation years, and the past turns up to haunt their future.

A fantastic page-turner for ages 15 and up.

Emily Gale is a Children’s & YA Specialist at Readings Carlton, and a Children’s & YA writer the rest of the time.

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