Saturday, July 21, 2012

Within Reach by Sarah Mayberry

Something more than friendship…

Being a single dad was never on Michael Young’s agenda. Yet with the sudden loss of his wife, that’s exactly the role he has. On his best days, he thinks he can handle it. On his worst… Luckily, family friend Angie Bartlett has his back, easily stepping in to help out.

Lately, though, something has changed…

Michael is noticing exactly how gorgeous Angie is, and how single she is. She’s constantly in his thoughts and he feels an attraction he never expected. Does he dare disrupt the very good thing they have going? If they have a fling that goes nowhere, he stands to lose everything—including her. But if they make it work, he stands to gain everything!


Within Reach is one of the best, most poignant, most beautiful contemporary romances I’ve read to date. The very nature of this story sets this up to be heartbreaking and tragic on so many levels, but it is also inspiring and hopeful and uplifting, too.

When Billie Young died, she left behind her two small children, Eva and Charlie, a devastated husband, Michael, and her best friend, Angie. The pain and the shock of her sudden death sent them all reeling, but it's the loneliness and emptiness which Michael can't seem to overcome that threatens to destroy what's left of his family. Angie can no longer watch the slow disintegration of these people she loves so much, so she decides to step in and do what she can to bring them back to the land of the living.

I was so impressed with the level of compassion and sensitivity given to the telling of this story. Angie's and Michael's struggle to move forward was such an emotional journey and I loved how they helped each other through it. Their physical attraction to one another didn't happen overnight, but was a natural, gradual... awakening. Their passion and sexual chemistry was combustive and felt right because the grieving process wasn’t rushed. In fact, everything about this story flowed well, and I felt as though I was part of it somehow. As though these people were my friends and I was right there as their story unfolded.

The bottom line: For as long as I can remember, Harlequin novels have had a reputation of being nothing but cheesy, melodramatic short stories, but trust me on this; the Harlequin of today is not your mama’s Harlequin! The stories address today’s issues, today’s lifestyles and relationships, and do so in a believable, entertaining way. I’m so glad I decided to give these books another try because they’ve turned out to be some of my very favorite, most enjoyable reading experiences, and books like Within Reach are the reason why. Thought provoking, uplifting, inspiring... this story has made it to my "keepers" shelf and Sarah Mayberry is an author who I will absolutely be reading more of.

4.5 of 5 stars!
My thanks to and Harlequin for providing me with a copy of this truly beautiful story in exchange for an honest review.

1 comment:

  1. I love her books too!