Warning: this book made me sob like an out-of-control hormonal mess of a reader. And the weird thing was I couldn't put it down. I started it in the late afternoon and read it almost straight through till midnight the same day. It was heart-wrenching (not to mention a little alarmingly close to home - not the romance, another part) and I cried, then I laughed, then I felt woozy and romantic and then I cried some more, then I pretty much sobbed, and I think my dogs were concerned (I know the cat was...the hubby was asleep and snoring), and then I cried HARDER. WHEW. Deep breath.
I think at times the emotional winging of my heart like a limp, saturated-beyond-belief heart was a little much to deal with, but there's no denying that Mayberry writes some the best, most awesome, truthful romances today. The situations in which her characters find love are sometimes brutal, but they are realistic and along the way there is so much tenderness and strength and discovery. It's amazing. Every. Darn. Time. Within Reach is no exception, and I think it's actually her most frank, honest and best romances to date.
I did wish at times it didn't hit my quite so hard in the heart - there's fewer breaks in between all the downs to lift the heart, and I did wish that the ending had ended on a bit more of a high. It IS a HEA, it's just that it's a brief HEa after a very heart-wrenching twist in the story. Maybe an epilogue could have helped soften it more.
Other than that, long live the Mayberry romance!