"Beyond the Reach of Words" explores the teenage years and early adulthood of composer and musician Johann Sebastian Bach, told from the point of view of Bach's friend Edmund. Bach was renowned, especially in his youth, for his improvisational abilities on the organ. Like modern-day music fans, the boys follow an early 18th century music group on its way to Lübeck, Germany. There, they find the great musician Dietrich Buxtehude, who is searching for a successor for his position as chief organist at St. Mary's Cathedral.
Buxtehude believes his successor must marry his own daughter, 34-year-old Anna Margareta. While Bach possesses the musical prowess and talent for the role, he is already engaged to his cousin Maria Barbara.
Though much has been written about the famous musician, very little is known about his personal life. This book is an imaginative exploration into Bach's formative years, including his time at the Luneburg Latin School and his first posts in orchestras in Weimar and Arnstadt.