New York Times bestselling romance and women’s fiction author Barbara Delinsky weaves a tale of a failed marriage and a loving friendship in Within Reach, which was first published in 1992. The marriage of prominent couple Danica and Blake Lindsay is in shambles. Blake has a high-profile job in politics, and he is constantly away on business. Danica is left to her own devices at home in Boston while Blake is away. At her disposal are modern conveniences and luxuries most of us do not enjoy – live-in help such as a housekeeper and a cook, luxury automobiles, endless shopping sprees, and pretty much anything that Danica may desire – except for one thing, which is the companionship of her husband.
At the beginning of Within Reach, Danica and Blake have purchased a vacation home on the beach in Maine. Danica was the driving force in the purchase of the home because she hopes that a weekend getaway home will revitalize their marriage. However, as Danica remodels and decorates the home, Blake is constantly away on business trips or remains in their hometown of Boston to work. Instead of spending time with her husband, Danica meets a different man, Michael Buchanan. Michael is a writer who lives near Danica’s vacation home. Michael and Danica quickly form a close bond, and their platonic friendship instantly has the undercurrents of attraction and, perhaps, love underneath the surface. However, Danica is a married woman and she knows that she must honor her marriage commitment to Blake – no matter that he is essentially an “absent husband.” Meanwhile, trouble is brewing in Blake’s career that can change lives forever, depending on the outcome.
The bulk of Within Reach is about Danica’s crumbling marriage and her friendship with Michael – which slowly but surely turns into a passionate love affair, bringing the promise of true happiness for Danica for the first time in her life. Within Reach has a good deal of romance but other issues abound in the book, such as Danica’s failing marriage with Blake, the career moves and risks taken by Blake, and Danica’s attempt at finding true happiness through Michael, work, and the idea of motherhood. Although Within Reach is a bit long and the storyline is rather predictable, fans of Delinsky’s works that missed this book in its earlier printings will enjoy reading about Danica’s struggles and triumphs as she finds happiness through love.