Off to Join the Circus

Off to Join the Circus

April 7, 2024

Purchase Tickets

The Lessans Family Literary Series Presents:

Deborah Kalb

Deborah Kalb: Off to Join the Circus

In Person | $18

The Lessans Family Literary Series is thrilled to welcome Deborah for her presentation of her new book, Off to Join the Circus. Please join us for a Teatime Talk with author, local community member and frequent Lessans Literary Series program moderator at the Bender JCC, Deborah Kalb.


Off to Join the Circus focuses on an overly enmeshed, neurotic Jewish family in the Washington area, and what happens when a teenage runaway returns after 64 years.

Adele Pinsky ran away as a teenager back in 1954, perhaps to join a circus. The repercussions from her departure reverberated down the generations, affecting her younger brother, Howard, now a 75-year-old retired lawyer; his educator wife, Marilyn; their three daughters; and their two teenaged grandsons. Adele’s reappearance in 2018, at a moment when the family is preparing for the younger grandson’s bar mitzvah and the birth of the middle daughter’s baby, upends the Pinsky family’s assumptions about one another in hilarious and poignant ways.


Deborah Kalb is the author of the novel Off to Join the Circus, her debut novel for adults. She has also written fiction for kids and nonfiction for adults, and she’s the host of the blog Book Q&As with Deborah Kalb, where she interviews an eclectic range of authors. A former longtime D.C.-based journalist covering Congress and politics, she lives in the Washington, D.C., area.