Escaping the increased scrutiny from their recent hit movie, actor Levi Combs takes his young costar Emily James out to a remote waterfall in the California wilderness. Concerned about the relationship, his agent Eva Florez anonymously tips off photographer Gabe Adams about the waterfall, knowing he’ll want to photograph it and hopefully capture them as well. Not recognizing who Levi and his costar are, Gabe plans to discard the photos, but his younger sister, a huge fan of Emily’s, sells them to an entertainment site to help Gabe since he has sacrificed so much raising her after their parents died. Attempting to mitigate the damage she caused, Eva seduces Gabe to stop him from releasing additional photos and becoming a witness for Deputy District Attorney Marcus Ambrose, who has his own personal score to settle with Levi. Blending the nuance and insight of literary fiction with the big-screen magic of a Hollywood thriller, Focus Lost takes readers to the border of passion and obsession.
Praise for Doug Cooper
"A deep, entertaining read about all the truths that find us when we’re looking the other way."
―Jerry Stahl, author of Permanent Midnight, Bad Sex on Speed, and Happy Mutant Baby Pills
"Rarely does an author capture the frenzied descent into drug and alcohol abuse as Doug Cooper does in his tumultuous novel, Outside In. A story of disillusion drowned in excess, tempered by the decisions we make to survive another day. A searing debut."
―Stephen Jay Schwartz, Los Angeles Times bestselling author of Boulevard and Beat
"This modern take on finding oneself shows readers what can happen when you completely lose control and become someone you are not. It reminds us all of Shakespeare’s counsel, ‘To thine own self be true.’"
―Weldon Long, author of the New York Times bestseller The Power of Consistency
"Outside In takes readers on a wild ride with the final destination being a rediscovered sense of self."
―Colleen Hoover, author of the New York Times bestseller Slammed
"Doug Cooper writes authoritatively about the ease with which circumstances conspire to ensnare a promising young teacher into a lush life of sex, drugs, and rock and roll. It remains to be seen how easy it will be for him to get himself out―or if he will just become another bleached-out lotus-eater in the Florida sun. A charismatic cast of characters populates this promising novel from a rising talent."
―Stuart Smith, CEO, Central Recovery
“[An] insightful coming-of-age story.”
“…the relatable tale of one man’s quarter-life crisis that will resonate with readers of all ages.”
―Red City Review
“A look at one man’s belated coming of age that’s equally funny, earnest, romantic, and lamenting, Doug Cooper’s debut novel explores the modern search for responsibility and identity, showing through the eyes of Brad Shepherd how sometimes, we can only come to understand who we truly are by becoming the person we’re not.”
Doug Cooper is the author of the award-winning novels Outside In and The Investment Club. Always searching, he has traveled to over twenty-five countries on five continents, exploring the contradictions between what we believe and how we act in the pursuit of truth, beauty, and love. Originally from Port Clinton, Ohio, he has also called Cleveland, St. Louis, Detroit, New York, Las Vegas, and Oslo, Norway home. Focus Lost is his third novel.