United Jewish Federation of Tidewater & the Simon Family JCC’s 
Lee and Bernard Jaffe Family Jewish Book Festival

All events, unless otherwise noted are open to the community with RSVP required and will take place at the
Reba and Sam Sandler Family Campus
5000 Corporate Woods Drive, Virginia Beach 


For more information about the Festival, to sponsor, or volunteer, contact Callah Terkeltaub at 757.321.2331 or CTerkeltaub@ujft.org

The United Jewish Federation of Tidewater and the Simon Family JCC’s Lee and Bernard Jaffe Family Jewish Book Festival is held in coordination with the Jewish Book Council, a national organization whose sole purpose is the promotion of Jewish books.


** Register a community book club and receive the following: Discounts on group tickets, reserved group seating at author events, recognition during program welcome remarks, and a special ‘Book Clubs Only’ reception with a book club author. Contact Callah Terkeltaub at cterkeltaub@ujft.org for more information or to register a book club.



2387 Wednesday, November 7, 2018 7:30 PM

Matt Goldman | Gone to Dust: A Novel

Emmy Award-winning writer for Seinfeld and Ellen, Matt Goldman brings his signature storytelling abilities to his debut novel, Gone to Dust.

The page-turning story involves a rare murder in a tranquil suburban neighborhood in the dead of winter with the body and house littered with dirt from hundreds of emptied vacuum cleaner bags, a conflicted Jewish private investigator named after a Swede who retains his sardonic wit while in search of a very sophisticated killer. Goldman uses his talents to create a memorable, irreverent PI named Nils Shapiro who explores the cold winter landscape of Minnesota to solve a twisted tale in a sleepy, well-off suburb.


Gone to Dust: A Novel is one of our 2018/2019 book club picks** 

Click here to register.




2388 Thursday, November 15, 2018 7:30 PM  

Avi Jorisch | Thou Shalt Innovate: How Israeli Ingenuity Repairs the World

Israel is playing a disproportionate role in helping solve some of the world’s biggest challenges by tapping into the nation’s soul: the spirit of Tikkun Olam, the Jewish concept of repairing the world. Thou Shalt Innovate profiles 15 wondrous Israeli innovations that are changing the lives of billions of people around the world, while exploring why Israeli innovators of all faiths feel compelled to make the world better. This is the story of how Israelis are helping to feed the hungry, cure the sick, protect the defenseless, and make the desert bloom.

A thought leader in exploring global innovation trends, the Arab world, counterterrorism, and illicit finance, Avi Jorisch previously served in the U.S. Departments of Treasury and Defense. He is a seasoned entrepreneur and Middle East expert, Senior Fellow at the American Foreign Policy Council, member of the Council on Foreign Relations and the Entrepreneurs’ Organization, author of five books, and has had articles published in New York Times, Wall Street Journal, Foreign Affairs, Forbes, and Al-Arabiya.

In conjunction with the Community Relations Council of the United Jewish Federation of Tidewater, Simon Family JCC, and community partners’ Israel Today series, including UJFT’s  Society of Professionals.

Click here to register.

Visit JewishVA.org/IsraelToday for more information on the 8th Annual Israel Today Series 





2389 Friday, November 16, 2018 8:30 AM

John Schwartz | This is the Year I Put My Financial Life in Order

A New York Times reporter, John Schwartz thought he’d grow up to be a financial maven. In fact, at 13, he put his bar mitzvah money into IBM. Soon after, the stock tanked, and Schwartz realized he was no money genius. Flash forward to his late 50s, and he realized he hadn’t gotten much smarter; he had no idea whether he and his wife had enough saved for a comfortable retirement, or whether there was enough life insurance. They didn’t even have a will! So, Schwartz set out to finally learn about money, and realized that while many people avoid thinking about it, financial planning can be learned, like just about anything else.

Part financial memoir and part research-based guide to attaining lifelong security, This is The Year I Put My Financial Life in Order is the book that everyone who has never wanted to read a preachy financial guide has been waiting for and a key resource for parents who want to encourage financial knowledge for their children.

No matter your age, situation, or status, This is The Year I Put My Financial Life in Order will help you become your own best financial adviser.


Light breakfast and networking at 7:45 AM, in partnership with the Tidewater Jewish Foundation

Click here to register.

In partnership with the Tidewater Jewish Foundation




2390 Wednesday, November 21, 2018 12:00 PM

Jane Isay | Unconditional Love

A Guide to Navigating the Joys and Challenges of Being a Grandparent Today
$12 Lunch/$30 Lunch & Signed Book

Bundled registration for lunch and a signed book closes November 13

Take a break from Thanksgiving prep for a laugh with friends!

For many, a grandchild offers the opportunity to be the parent they didn’t have the time or energy to be with their own children. Wonderfully intimate, psychologically astute and often humorous, Jane Isay’s Unconditional Love is an emotional guide to being a grandparent. Building on her personal experience, dozens of interviews, and extensive psychological research, Isay shows how a grandparent—though no longer in charge—can use his/her unique perspective and experience to find a way to keep the love flowing. Isay is also the author of Secrets and Lies, about family secrets and revelations; Walking on Eggshells, about parents and their adult children; and Mom Still Likes You Best, about adult siblings.

Click here to register.

In partnership with Beth Sholom Village and Hebrew Academy of Tidewater




2391 Tuesday, November 27, 2018 7:30 PM  

Jenna Blum | The Lost Family: A Novel

Jenna Blum, the New York Times bestselling author of Those Who Save Us, creates a vivid portrait of marriage, family, and the haunting grief of World War II that spans three cinematic decades. Set in 1965 Manhattan, The Lost Family follows Auschwitz survivor, Peter Rashkin’s life as a restaurant owner. His work consumes him, as does his terrible guilt over surviving Auschwitz, while his wife, Masha—the restaurant’s namesake—and two young daughters, perished. June Bouquet, a young fashion model, pierces his guard and the two begin a passionate courtship. When June becomes pregnant, Peter proposes, hoping a new family will help him relinquish the past. Over the next 20 years, however, Peter’s indelible anguish haunts him, June, and their daughter Elisabeth transforming them in shocking, heartbreaking, and unexpected ways.  

With a husband devastated by grief he cannot voice, a frustrated wife competing with a ghost she cannot banish, and a daughter sensitive to the pain of her family and another lost before she was born. Spanning three cinematic decades, The Lost Family is a elegantly bittersweet study of loss and love.


The Lost Family: A Novel is a 2018-2019 Book Club pick** and is in partnership with the United Jewish Federation of Tidewater’s Holocaust Commission and Women’s Cabinet 

Click here to register.

In partnership with the Holocaust Commission of the United Jewish Federation of Tidewater 



2392 Thursday, November 29, 2018 12:00 PM

Sally Kohn | The Opposite of Hate: A Field Guide to Repairing Our Humanity

$12 Lunch/$30 Lunch & Book

Bundled registration for lunch and a signed book closes November 19

As a progressive commentator on Fox News and now CNN, Sally Kohn has made a career of bridging political differences, learning how to talk civilly to people whose views she opposes passionately. Although Kohn gave a TED Talk about what she termed ‘emotional correctness,’ these days, even she has found herself wanting to breathe fire at her enemies. Kohn decided to look into the pervasive eruption of ugliness. In The Opposite of Hate, Kohn interviews leading scientists and researchers, investigating the evolutionary and cultural roots of hate and how simple incivility can be a gateway to much worse. She traveled to Rwanda, the Middle East, and across the United States, introducing audiences to terrorists, white supremacists, and others, drawing surprising lessons from these dramatic examples, including inspiring stories of those who left hate behind.

Sally Kohn is a writer, activist, political commentator and host of the podcast, “State of Resistance.” Prior to that, she worked for over 15 years as a community organizer, and then as a Fox News contributor. Her TED talks have garnered over three million views.

Discussion with Panelists:

Rabbi Jeffrey Arnowitz, Congregation Beth El

Reverend Dr. Antipas Harris, Urban Renewal Center

Doron Ezickson, Regional Director, Anti-Defamation League, Washington D.C. Region

In partnership with the United Jewish Federation of Tidewater’s Community Relations Council, the Holocaust Commission, Advocates for Racial Justice, Hands United Building Bridges (HUBB), Advocates for Racial Justice, Hampton Roads Pride, and the Anti-Defamation League (ADL)

Click here to register.


Sunday, December 2, 2018 12:30 PM-3:30 PM

2393 PJ Library’s Latkepalooza and Camp Extravaganza with Rick Recht LIVE

1:00 PM - Jamie Korngold | Sadie’s Almost Marvelous Menorah Sadie’s Snowy Tu B’Shevat

Sadie accidentally breaks the Hanukkah menorah she made for her mother at school, in Sadie’s Almost Marvelous Menorah. Sadie is devastated about the menorah shattering until she realizes that the shammash candle remains unbroken after the fall, and a new family tradition is born.

In Korngold’s newest book, Sadie’s Snowy Tu B’Shevat, Sadie wants to plant a tree for Tu B’Shevat but it’s the middle of the winter. Her parents and grandfather assure her that a tree can’t take root in the frozen ground, but with help from her brother Ori and Grandma, Sadie learns why the tree-planting holiday is celebrated in winter and finds her own special ways to celebrate.

Rabbi Jamie Korngold is the author of 11 books, including the beloved Sadie and Ori series. Known as the “Adventure Rabbi,” she brings her innovative take on Judaism to students around the world via AdventureRabbi.org, the online school she founded in 2003. Rabbi Korngold is a regular on the Jewish book tour circuit, known for he involvement with PJ Library, her engaging style, and enthusiastic presentations. 

Click here to register.



2394 2:15 PM - Carrie Jones | The Spy Who Played Baseball

Moe Berg is not a typical major league baseball player in the 1930s. He’s Jewish, has a law degree, speaks several languages, and loves traveling the world. He also happens to be a spy for the U.S. government, and when World War II begins, Moe trades his baseball career for a life of danger and secrecy. A picture book for both sports and spy lovers, The Spy Who Played Baseball is also about a Jewish immigrant’s son using brilliance and persistence to adapt to his new culture.

Carrie Jones is a quirky, internationally and New York Times bestselling author from Maine who longs to somehow save the world. An award-winning editor, photographer, a Rotarian public image expert and on-call firefighter, she wears many hats but her passion is story. Jones is the founder of the Bar Harbor Kids Book Festival, which brings authors and illustrators to Mount Desert Island for two full days of school visits, public appearances, contests, and interactions with both kids and adults.

Generously funded by the United Jewish Federation of Tidewater and the Tidewater Jewish Foundation, in partnership with One Happy Camper.

For more information on the weekend with Rick Recht, visit JewishVA.org/Latkepalooza




2399 Thursday, January 10, 2019 12:00 PM

Rachel Herz | Why You Eat What You Eat
The Science Behind Our Relationship with Food

$12 Lunch/$30 Lunch & Book

Bundled registration for lunch and a signed book closes January 3

In Why You Eat What You Eat, acclaimed neuroscientist Rachel Herz examines the sensory, psychological, neuroscientific, and physiological factors that influence eating habits. Uncovering the fascinating and surprising facts that influence food consumption and revealing useful techniques for improving one’s experience of food, Herz weaves curious findings and compelling facts into a narrative that tackles important questions revealing how food alters the relationship we have with ourselves and each other.

Rachel Herz is a neuroscientist specializing in perception and emotion teaching at Brown University and Boston College. The author of The Scent of Desire and That’s Disgusting, Herz is a world-renowned expert on the psychology of smell and believes that scent is the Rosetta stone for understanding emotion.

Discussion with Panelists:

Tom Purcell, Membership and Wellness Director, Simon Family JCC’s JFit
Sandra Porter Leon, MS, RDN, Professor at Tidewater Community College and Nutrition Consultant

Click here to register.

In partnership with the Simon Family JCC’s JFit




2395 Tuesday, February 12, 2019 12:00 PM

Hillel Smith | Parsha Posters

Discussion & gallery tour with the artist 
$12 Lunch/ $50 Lunch & Book

Bundled registration for lunch and a signed book closes February 4

A bold, graphic aesthetic that tells biblical stories in a surprising new way, the Parsha Posters project is inspired by modern minimalist graphic design. These 54 illustrations embody the emotions and characters of the parshat hashavua (weekly Torah portion) in a contemporary visual language. This collection also incorporates innovative typography: each cleverly integrating the Hebrew name of the parsha into the design. Taken together, these images offer a cutting-edge vision of engagement with the Torah.  Parsha Posters includes the entire series, printed in vibrant color, with each illustration presented alongside the original translation of the biblical verses it portrays. The book is a window to a fresh understanding of sacred text, a starting point for creative approaches to Torah learning, and proof of the potential of Jewish tradition to remain relevant and compelling.

Hillel Smith is an artist and graphic designer who reimagines the potential of Judaica by utilizing contemporary media to create new manifestations of traditional forms. Smith has painted dynamic Jewish murals around the world, and his myriad of physical and digital projects encourage creative reconsideration of religious practice, as well as art-making as a tool for cultural connection.


All 54 posters will be on display in the Leon Family Gallery at the Simon Family JCC during the month of February. 

Click here to register.




2396 Monday, March 18, 2019 12:00 PM

Marilyn Simon Rothstein | Husbands and Other Sharp Objects
$12 Lunch/$20 Lunch & Book

Bundled registration for lunch and a signed book closes March 11

Award-winning author of Lift and Separate, Marilyn Simon Rothstein’s second novel, Husbands and Other Sharp Objects follows the trials and tribulations of maneuvering divorce. After a lifetime of marriage, Marcy Hammer is ready to get herself unhitched—just as everyone else in her life is looking for commitment. Her new boyfriend, Jon, wants to get serious, and her soon-to-be ex-husband, Harvey, is desperate to get back together. When her headstrong daughter announces a secret engagement to Harvey’s attorney, Marcy finds herself planning her daughter’s wedding as she plans her own divorce. Husbands and Other Sharp Objects is a heartwarming, hilarious novel for anyone who has ever had a family.

Click here to register.

In celebration of JCC Senior Book Club’s 100th read. For more information about joining the book club**, please contact Callah Terkeltaub at cterkeltaub@ujft.org.




2397 Tidewater Together presented by the Milton “Mickey” Kramer Scholar-in-Residence Fund, the United Jewish Federation of Tidewater, and the Tidewater Synagogue Leadership Council

Friday, March 29– Sunday, March 31, 2019

Rabbi Joseph Telushkin | Words that Hurt, Words that Heal: How the Words You Choose Shape Your Destiny

A thoroughly reworked and updated version of a classic work first released more than 20 years ago, before the age of the internet. Drawing on the rich Jewish tradition of laws concerning fair speech, Rabbi Telushkin has long regarded Words that Hurt, Words that Heal: How the Words We Choose Shape Our Destiny as perhaps the most important book he has written. Few things impact one’s own self-image and the image of others as the words they have chosen and spoken.

Rabbi Joseph Telushkin, who has been hailed as “America’s Rabbi,” has written 18 books including Jewish Literacy: The Most Important Things to Know about the Jewish Religion, Its People, and Its History, the widest selling book on Judaism of the past 30 years; the Book of Jewish Values; and, most recently Rebbe. Rabbi Telushkin is a New York Times bestselling author and is hailed by Talk Magazine as one of the 50 best speakers in the United States. He co-authored with Dennis Prager one of the most influential Jewish books published in the last 35 years, The Nine Questions People Ask About Judaism, hailed by Herman Wouk as “the intelligent skeptic’s guide to Judaism.”

Minimal cost for some events to cover food.




2398 Wednesday, April 10, 2019 7:30 PM

Janice Kaplan | How Luck Happens: Using the Science of Luck to Transform Work, Love, and Life

The former editor-in-chief of Parade magazine, Janice Kaplan is the author of 14 books including The New York Times bestseller The Gratitude Diaries, which received international praise. In her newest book, How Luck Happens, Kaplan explores how good luck doesn’t just drop from the sky, people have more control over their futures than they sometimes realize. It turns out that luck occurs at the intersection of chance, talent, and hard work, and this helpful and entertaining book offers breakthrough insights on how a person can create more luck in love and marriage, career, health, and family relationships.

Kaplan was deputy editor of TV Guide magazine and executive producer of the TV Guide Television Group, where she created and produced more than 30 television shows that aired primetime on ABC, FOX, VH1 and other networks. In addition to her popular non-fiction works, she has written hundreds of articles for national magazines and has enjoyed wide success as a magazine editor, television producer, writer, and journalist.

Click here to register.

In partnership with Jewish Family Service of Tidewater

The United Jewish Federation of Tidewater & the Simon Family JCC’s Lee and Bernard Jaffe* Family Jewish Book Festival is held in coordination with the Jewish Book Council, the only organization in the organized American Jewish community whose sole purpose is the promotion of Jewish books.
*of blessed memory
** Register a community book club and receive the following exclusive perks: discounts on group tickets, reserved seating with book club at author events, book club mention during program welcome remarks, and a special book clubs only reception with a book club author. Please contact Callah Terkeltaub at cterkeltaub@ujft.org for more information or to register a book club.
Powered by Drupal, an open source content management system