Off to Join the Circus focuses on an overly enmeshed, neurotic Jewish family in the Washington, D.C., area, and what happens when a relative 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 a freelance writer and editor. She spent about two decades working as a journalist in Washington, D.C., for news organizations including Gannett News Service, Congressional Quarterly, U.S. News & World Report, and The Hill, mostly covering Congress and politics.
She is the author of three novels for kids and she’s the co-author with her father of Haunting Legacy: Vietnam and the American Presidency from Ford to Obama. She is the author of Elections A to Z and the co-editor of State of the Union: Presidential Rhetoric from Wilson to Bush.
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