2023 Staff TBR List


With January kicking off the start of the New Year, the Plano West Blueprints Staff compiled a short list of their projected 2023 reads to give you a glimpse of the novels they’ll be enjoying in their free time with varying recommendations spanning most genres.


Blaire Bayless, Staff Writer:

One True Loves – Taylor Jenkins Reid

Burdened by her late husband’s tragic disappearance over the Pacific Ocean ten years ago, Emma Blair navigates a new relationship and what it means to fall in love again after grief. Just as she settles into a routine with her newfound fiance, her lost husband, Jesse, is found, and Emma is forced to face two sides of history. How will she decide which is her “One True Love?”

“We are two people who are madly in love with our old selves. And that is not the same as being in love.” 



New US Paperback cover!

Song of Achilles – Madeline Miller 

Achilles, Greece’s greatest hero, and Patroclus, his exiled closest confidant, meet by fate before the violence of the Trojan War. Inseparable since childhood and bonded by training, Achilles joins the Greek cause, desiring a “glorious destiny,” and takes Patroclus along with him, unbeknownst to what fate has prepared for them ahead.

“We were like gods at the dawning of the world, & our joy was so bright we could see nothing else but the other.”



Izzy Nielson, Staff Writer:

The Guest List

The Guest List– Lucy Foley

Extravagance, champagne, and celebrations are what the guests of the Slater wedding expected to encounter after receiving an invitation to attend…not murder. Set off the coast of Ireland, this murder mystery follows the aftermath of tragedy as each guest questions the culprit’s identity and motive for wishing poorly on the happy couple.

“But that’s nostalgia for you, the tyranny of those memories of childhood that feel so golden, so perfect.” 



All the Dangerous Things by Stacy Willingham | Goodreads

All the Dangerous Things – Stacy Willingham

Isabelle Drake expected sleep deprivation when raising her child Mason, but not with the added grief of his sudden kidnapping. Faced with a cold case and the effects of self-inflicted insomnia, Isabelle struggles to understand where reality blurs in her understanding of the events and if her hidden memories have any answers.

“I understand that there’s something even more unsettling than being alone in the dark.

It’s realizing that you’re not really alone at all.”



Katie Chou, Staff Writer:

The Great Gatsby by F. Scott Fitzgerald, Paperback | Barnes & Noble®

The Great Gatsby – F. Scott Fitzgerald

Set in the 1920s Jazz Era of American history, “Gatsby” follows the lavish lifestyle of Jay Gatsby in Long Island, New York, and his reconnection with old flame Daisy Buchanan.

“I was within and without, simultaneously enchanted and repelled by the inexhaustible variety of life.”



Crime and Punishment | The Great American Read | WTTW Chicago

Crime and Punishment – Fyodor Dostoevsky

Raskolnikov, a former academic, commits an unremorseful murder on the streets of St. Petersburg after perceiving himself to act at a “higher purpose.” This begins a back-and-forth chase with investigators in the area and causes Raskolnikov’s moral consciousness to undertake a guilt-ridden spiral.

“We sometimes encounter people, even perfect strangers, who begin to interest us at first sight, somehow suddenly, all at once, before a word has been spoken.”



The Joy of Game Theory: An Introduction to Strategic Thinking 2, Talwalkar, Presh - Amazon.com

The Joy of Game Theory – Presh Talwalkar

Game theory is the study of interactive decision making where each person’s action affects the outcome for the whole group. This collection of articles shows you how to make better decisions and change the game, a powerful concept that can transform no-win situations into mutually beneficial outcomes.

“Before you start yelling at someone for their behavior, see why they are acting that way. Change the game and everyone can win.” 



Wilmal Stewart, Staff Writer:

My Lovely Wife by Samantha Downing -

My Lovely Wife – Samantha Downing 

Every couple has their solution to combat boredom in a relationship, but in the case of Millicent and her husband things get a little bit twisted. Bonded by murder and the rush of the chase, the pair live double lives in suburbia.

“I wanted to surprise you,” she says. “For our anniversary.” I stare at her. My lovely wife. “It’s demented,” I say. She raises an eyebrow at me. Before she can speak, I put my finger against her lips. “And it’s brilliant,” I say.” 



The Dead Romantics

The Dead Romantics – Ashley Poston

Florence Day is a ghostwriter for one of the best-selling romance authors but struggles to believe in love after a rough breakup. Wrestling with her recent story and the deadlines inflicted by her new editor, Florence finds herself back in the hometown she left years ago and faced with the ghost of her newly dead editor.

“I began to realize that love wasn’t dead, but it wasn’t forever either. It was something in between, a moment in time where two people existed at the exact same moment in the exact same place in the universe.” 



Count Your Lucky Stars by Alexandria Bellefleur

Count Your Lucky Stars – Alexandria Bellefleur

Margot Cooper doesn’t do relationships, but with all her friends starting to get engaged, she’s beginning to feel like a fifth wheel. On a wedding venue tour with one of the bride-to-be, she runs into wedding planner Olivia Grant, her childhood best friend and first love, who may be able to change her mind.

The right person shouldn’t complete you, they should love you the way you are. And it’s cool if they make you want to be better, but they should never make you feel like you are too much or not enough exactly as you are.”



Alyssa Royston, Editor:

Beautiful World, Where Are You

Beautiful World, Where Are You – Sally Rooney

Alice, a novelist, meets Felix by chance and invites him on a spontaneous trip to Rome. Over in Dublin, her best friend Eileen is grieving a breakup and trying things out with her new flame Simon. The pairs experience the ups and downs of growing in relationships and discover how to understand the world around them. 

“I suppose I think that having a child is simply the most ordinary thing I can imagine doing. And I want that- to prove that the most ordinary thing about human beings is not violence or greed but love and care. To prove it to whom, I wonder. Myself, maybe.” 



A Little Life

A Little Life – Hanya Yanagihara

Close friends JB, Willem, Malcolm, and Jude move to New York from their small Massachusetts college and enter a new phase of adulthood fueled by their ambitions. As they mature and grow together, the group learns more about Jude’s background and sharp edges, realizing the biggest challenge of the experience will be putting him back together. 

“Wasn’t friendship its own miracle, the finding of another person who made the entire lonely world seem somehow less lonely?” 



Ian Pauken, Staff Writer:

The Trial

The Trial – Franz Kafka

“The Trial” follows Josef K., a well-known bank officer, and his trial against the court. Blinded of evidence and the cause of his unlawful arrest, Josef has to prepare a defense for a case no one will explain. 

“They’re talking about things of which they don’t have the slightest understanding anyway. It’s only because of their stupidity that they’re able to be so sure of themselves.” 



The Housekeeper and the Professor

The Housekeeper & the Professor -Yoko Ogawa

After a traumatic head injury, a math professor procures a rare diagnosis of an 80-minute short-term memory period. A housekeeper is tasked with caring for his livelihood, and together they traverse connections and quantities, exploring what it means to live in the present.

“Any kind of uncertainty caused him pain, so we were determined to hide the time that had passed and the memories he’d lost.” 



Pinball, 1973 (The Rat, #2)

Pinball 1973 – Haruki Murakami

“Pinball 1973” centers around the narrator’s brief but intense obsession with pinball, his life as a freelance translator, and his later efforts to reunite with the old pinball machine he used to play.

“We fell silent again. The thing we had shared was nothing more than a fragment of time that had died long ago. Even so, a faint glimmer of that warm memory still claimed a part of my heart. And when death claimed me, no doubt I would walk along by that faint light in the brief instant before being flung once again into the abyss of nothingness.”



Rain Ramirez, Staff Writer:

You'd Be Home Now

You’d Be Home By Now – Kathleen Glasgow

Emory struggles to understand who she is outside the perceptions of others. She’s the rich one, a well known granddaughter, the “good” child, and now the sister of Joey, the kid who went to rehab. So much has changed after his return and Emory wants to take back her identity and discover for herself who she really is.

“Someone I used to know said that’s the problem with adults. They just see kids as they want them to be, what they aren’t, and not as they are. I think about that all the time. Like, how much time and pain and suffering could be eliminated if you just accepted the kid in front of you and stopped trying to fix them.”



Girl in Pieces

Girl in Pieces – Kathleen Glasgow

Broken into sharpened edges, Charlotte Davis hardens her heart and enters a dark tumble into self-inflicted habits. She’s lost her father and best friend, and grapples with their permanent loss, learning what it means to hit rock bottom and climb your way out.  

“I’m tired and angry at myself. For letting myself get smaller and smaller in the hopes that he would notice me more. But how can someone notice you if you keep getting smaller?”



They Both Die at the End

They Both Die At The End – Adam Silvera

On September 5, Mateo Torrez and Rufus Emeterio each receive a call telling them that today is their death day. In a society where you know your last hours, the pair finds each other through the “Last Friend” app and experiences the adventure of a lifetime, if only for one day.

“I wasted all those yesterdays and am completely out of tomorrows.” 



Ansley Denison, Staff Writer:

The Secret History

The Secret History – Donna Tartt

A group of clever New England college students undergo lessons on a new way of understanding the world around them from an eccentric classics professor. As their knowledge grows beyond their control, concepts and morals twist toward something evil.

“Forgive me, for all the things I did but mostly for the ones that I did not.” 



The Atlas Paradox (The Atlas, #2)

The Atlas Paradox – Olivie Blake

The sequel to “The Atlas Six,” this novel follows six magicians, two rivalries, and one researcher as they continue to build their knowledge in the Alexandrian Society. Burdened with immense power and paying the price for its consequences, the group is split on whether to save or destroy the world. 

“People always craved power – that was a constant of humanity, a truer rule than any law of physics. If they weren’t given power, they took it. And however lofty and moral their foundational creed, people historically did not choose to give it away.” 



Hell Bent (Alex Stern, #2)

Hell Bent – Leigh Bardugo

“Hell Bent” is the extended story of Alex Stern and her time working for the Ninth House society at Yale. Still searching for her lost advisor Darlington, she builds a team of misfit allies to navigate the mysterious murders on campus and how they all connect.

“No quotes available. Released in late January.”



Hadia Khatri, Editor:

Wuthering Heights by Emily Brontë — The Book of Meadow

Wuthering Heights – Emily Brontë

At the center of this novel is the passionate, unfortunate love between Catherine Earnshaw and Heathcliff, whose relationship takes a turn for the worse. It’s recounted with such emotional intensity that it acquires the simplicity and depth of ancient tragic love.

“I have not broken your heart – you have broken it; and in breaking it, you have broken mine.”



My Side of the Mountain (Mountain, #1)

My Side of The Mountain – Jean Craighead George

Escaping the confinements of modern society, Sam Gribley adventures to the Catskill Mountains and learns to live off the land and claim back his independence.

“Fortunately, the sun has a wonderfully glorious habit of rising every morning” 



Eragon (The Inheritance Cycle, #1)

Eragon – Christopher Paolini

Living in poverty, Eragon stumbles upon an unidentifiable polished blue stone deep in the forest. Confused about its identity, he researches its origin and uncovers its legacy, an empire of dragons.

“Keep in mind that many people have died for their beliefs; it’s actually quite common. The real courage is in living and suffering for what you believe.” 



Mrs. Hester, Advisor:

Mr. Mercedes (Bill Hodges Trilogy, #1)

Mr. Mercedes – Stephen King

On a foggy night, a stolen Mercedes rampages through a busy city, killing eight and injuring fifteen. The anonymous driver escapes, but ex-cop Bill Hodges can’t let the case die and decides to pursue the killer before he strikes again.

“Hodges has read there are wells in Iceland so deep you can drop a stone down them and never hear the splash. He thinks some human souls are like that.”