Merry Tosa Book Club


It’s the most wonderful time of the year! Our book club will soon get together for our annual Tosa Book Club Christmas Soiree.

Mark your Calendars!

Date: Friday, December 6, 2013
Time: 6:30 p.m.
Location: Julia’s home

Start planning what you want to bring:

  • Food & Drink
  • Nice Gift ($25)
  • Naughty Gift (priceless)
  • 5 EASY questions from your discussion book

Below is a list of books and the discussion leaders:

Allison B.: The Snow Child by Eowyn Ivey

Allison N.: The Cat's Table by Michael Ondaatje 

Amy: Sweet Tooth by Ian McEwan 

Heather: Gone Girl by Gillian Flynn 

Jen O.: Just Kids by Patti Smith and The Orchardist by Amanda Coplin

Jenny F.: Miss Peregrine's Home for Peculiar Children by Ransom Riggs 

Julie: Beautiful Ruins by Jess Walter 
and The Immortal Life of Henrietta Lacks by Rebecca Skloot

Lisa: The Madonna's of Leningrad by Debora Dean 

Susie: One Hundred Years of Solitude by Gabriel Garcia Marquez 

Bring a Fictional Character back from the Dead


Boo! What fun we have when Jenny hosts the October book club. Every nook and cranny in her bungalow transforms into a spooky haunted house. Last year, we dressed up in character from Stephen King’s October selection, Skeleton Crew.

This year, Jenny requests we use our (zombie) brains and come dressed as any fiction character of our choice. Look through our Book Selection List to help remove the cobwebs in your mind and get the mad scientist in you creating the perfect costume masterpiece.

Hurry Up! The DEADline is October 17 at Jenny’s house.

Attention Please!

Our group of book lovers has never had any problem drawing attention in public—usually followed by strangers “shushing” us. But, hey, we can’t help it. We are just so excited to laugh and talk whenever we get a chance to spend time together.

So it was really nice to attract some favorable attention in today’s Journal-Sentinel article on book clubs (and food). Click here to read the article.

Along with the above article, recipes were featured from select book clubs. Being that our alias is “the Bacon Club,” it’s appropriate that Amy’s Sweet Chicken Bacon Wraps were included. The recipe is published in our site or you can read about it in the paper’s article.

Annual Christmas Party Tonight


Saturday, December 8
at 6:30PM

Julia’s house

Here’s a quick checklist of what you should bring:

Food & Drink you signed up for

Naughty & Nice Gifts

5-10 Questions from your book (we always have so many questions left over...5 is probably good)

A camera

Below is a list of books and the discussion leaders in case you’ve forgotten.

Jenny: “Hotel on the Corner of Bitter and Sweet”

Heather: “The Road to Nab End”

Lisa: “The Man Who Mistook His Wife for a Hat”

Allison B: “The Awakening”

Susie: “A Vintage Affair”

Allison N: “A Word Child”

Amy Ha: “In the Garden of Beasts”

Amy He: “Mudbound”

Julie: “Skeleton Crew”

Jenny: “Alice I Have Been”

December Book Club Holiday Party

Mark your calendar!

Please bring a dish to share and beverage!

Date: Friday, December 10th at 7PM

Location: Jenny's house

Trivia Game: Once again our holiday party will feature a trivia game where we compete for gifts. Bring one White Elephant gift and another traditional $10 - $15 gift. Also, each person is responsible for bringing ten questions based on the book they prepared discussion questions for during the year. Simple questions are encouraged, especially as the wine begins to flow!

Below is a list of books and the discussion leaders in case you've forgotten. Notice that some people led two books. We should remember next year not to give them two books again.

Lisa: "The Inconvenient Wife" by Megan Chance

Allison N: "The Road" by Cormac McCarthy

Heather: "The Bolter" by Frances Osborne

Julia: "Homer and Langley" by E.L. Doctorow and "So Brave, Young and Handsome" by Leif Enger

Julie: "The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo" by Stieg Larsson

Susie: "The Virgin Suicides" by Jeffrey Eugenides

Allison A: "A Letter to my Daughter" by Maya Angelou AND the poems: "Phenomenal Woman" and "Still I Rise"

Amy: "The Book Thief" by Markus Zusak

Thanks to Jenny for offering her home to us for the evening. We look forward to a wonderful night of merriment!

March Book Club: Spaah! Weekend Trip to Kohler

Mark your calendar and start packing your bags!

featuring spa services and relaxation at Kohler Water Spa

Date: Friday, March 12 (check-in is 4:00PM) to Sunday, March 14 (check-out is 1:00PM)

Location: Four-bedroom villa with a lake view at Blue Harbor resort in Sheboygan, WI

Book Discussion: A Letter to my Daughter by Maya Angelou AND the poems: Phenomenal Woman and Still I Rise. Finger-snapping and recitations are optional.

Continue reading "March Book Club: Spaah! Weekend Trip to Kohler" »

We Miss You, Jen

Jen O. and Renee
Above: Jen (right) poses with her good friend, Renee.

Omaha wins, Tosa Book Club Loses!

It's still difficult to realize that Jen has moved away from us. Our last book club gathering at Cafe Hollander was not our usual setting and a number of members were absent. Yet, Jen's absence was noticed and lamented. This coming October book club will be even harder. You like to pretend that she'll just miss our evening together; next book club she'll be back!

As in most book clubs, people come and go. Some can't fit the schedule; others just don't fit. Jen was one of our long-standing, devoted members. Many of our friends that gather each month are there because of her. Her warm and sensitive nature is inviting. Her smile, sometimes turning into a devilish grin, and laughter brighten any room. She's always compassionate and concerned about another's feelings. Every one of us consider her a good friend. Oh, how lucky Omaha is!

I'd like to offer a letter of recommendation to her next book club:

Jen brings with her wonderful insights and a pragmatic approach. She's willing to be vulnerable. She's willing to be strong. We've laughed with her and cried with her. You always look forward to your next conversation with her.

As a dietitian, she's a wonderful cook and provides only healthy foods at all times. Okay, perhaps not ALL the time. She really likes chocolate and has been known to advocate the usage of a large bag of M&Ms for medicinal purposes only.

She loves the classics and her book selections are always excellent literary works. At the same time, she has been seen lurking Barnes and Noble's magazine section pretending to read a home-decorating magazine while secretly combing the pages of "Us" about the love affair between our favorite "Twilight" actors.

Though, we still consider her a member and hope that she will be able to attend our future spa trip. We know she needs to carry on in her new home. Please add any comments you'd like to to help Jen find a new and worthy book club!

Get Ready for our Summer Trip to Ravinia!

Here are all of the details for the upcoming book club in Chicago:

Tuesday, August 11, 2009
8:00 PM

Sir James Galway and Tiempo Libre
Classical Meets Cuban

Pavilion at Ravinia
Gates open at 5:00 PM

Cost: $15.75 paid to Jenny F.


If you need a ride contact either Julia or Amy. Please meet at Julia's house at 3:00PM in order to pack the car and leave on time.

Julia's car: (fits 4) Julie, Julia, Jenny F
Amy's car: (fits 6) Amy, Susie, Allison B, Heather

Departure Time: 3:30PM


General Info: Waukegan station, 95 N. Spring St., Metra Union Pacific North Line (Chicago/Kenosha Suburban Service)

Departure Time: 5:15PM

Arrival: The train will drop us off right at Ravinia's west gate.

Cost: $3.80 each way

Return: train leaves Ravinia at 11:21PM and arrives in Waukegan at 11:50PM


When planning what to bring remember you have to carry everything on the train. Everyone needs to bring a folding chair; if you don't have one, ask a friend -- you'll need it!

General Info: You may bring your own beer, wine, coolers, lawn chairs, blankets, candles, food, et al, into the park.

Amy: chicken salad, wine, picnic blanket, picnic tote with cutting board, knife, 4? wine glasses and corkscrew. Maybe even baguettes and a sweet treat.

Jenny F: mixed olive spread with crackers or chips, fruit of some sort, and wine.

Allison B: fruit plate, cookies, prosecco, small plastic cups.

Julie: mango sangria (thanx to Jeni!), sweet 'n hot pepper dip with pretzels, cranberry chardonnay cheese spread, onion mild brick with crackers, shortbread cookies, cheese slicer, small spreaders, plastic ware.

Susie: shrimp cocktail, wine, 4 plastic wine glasses.

Julia: roasted red pepper hummus, veggies, little CB table, candles.

Heather: little CB table, chair, white wine, water, 2 picnic blankets, picnic backpack, plates and napkins, medium-sized rolling cooler, 6 plastic wine glasses.

Christmas in July

Above l to r: (front row) Lisa, Jeni O., Heather, Julie;
(back row) Jenny F., Julia, Allison N., Susie O.

Just a reminder of how much fun we had at our 2008 Holiday Party hosted by Susie O. The 2009 Holiday Party is destined to be of equal frivolity! It was decided that this year each member would bring a simple inexpensive thoughtful gift, a silly white elephant gift and trivia questions. So start preparing now!

Trivia Quiz Questions

Each person is responsible for bringing ten trivia questions pertaining to her book selection for the year. Don't make them too difficult because we all have children and thus we can't remember anything anymore, PLUS, the wine will be flowing.

White Elephant Gift

The challenge is on for who can come up with the most spectacular gift. Check out some of the popular gifts bestowed on the luckiest of our group!


Okay, maybe Allison N. secretly loved this gift. It is a beautiful lifelike rendering of man's best friend painted on silk. Classy!



 The Self-Portrait Pot: We already knew we had many talented artists in our group, but this amazing self-portrait, hand-crafted out of earthenware, is of the highest caliber. The artist requests to remain anonymous so that she doesn't outshine or make our other members feel inadequate.



The Mother-in-Law Gift: Enough said. (The gift has been pixelated to protect the identity of the offender.)



Who Wants to Shake it! Shake it! Lisa does. It doesn't feel festive until you bring out your Shrunken Head Magic Wand to conjure up the Christmas spirit.