The Danube Club is a literary collective, unified by a love of the physical book. A book is not merely a collection of words, but a moment in time, a refuge for our memories, a trustworthy companion. Tangibility is its greatest strength, to which the age of digitalisation has no answer. It is this magical object that we wish to preserve and celebrate.
As such, each month our members receive one book of our choosing, drawing from Modern classics, contemporary fiction, biography and other literary genres. Our aim is to choose books that have not been widely read, whether that is as recent releases or more left-field classics. We get help from professional book sellers who have their ears to the ground, but insist that any book we send out has been read and loved by one or both of our
founders. Thus, we can be confident that these are books that, at least in our mind, deserve to be read.
The chosen book for the month is thoughtfully selected and sourced in person from Lutyens & Rubinstein, our favourite independent bookstore in London. We hand package everything and post it to your door, with a personal and bespoke touch. With every member receiving the same book, as you turn the pages you become part of a collective literary conversation whilst enjoying the solitary pleasure of reading and reflection.
As each book is read, digested and ultimately added to your bookshelf, a new thread is sewn into your own personal literary history. We passionately believe that a library does not only tell the
stories of the books it contains, but acts as a tapestry, revealing the meandering plot of our own lives.
In addition, our exclusive events at bookstores and other spaces around London afford members access to the wider membership as well as young emerging writers, placing The Danube Club at the heart of the contemporary literary movement.
Whether you consume epic tales in a matter of days, or leisurely flick through novels on your commute to work, whether you prefer renowned literary classics or the latest from 20th Century Transrealist fiction, The Danube Club welcomes all.
"Heaven and earth are ruthless, and treat the myriad creatures as straw dogs." Lao Tzu
From a strong showing in his younger years, driven largely by the Redwall series of the late Brian Jacques, Will's passion for reading bore the brunt of the increasing commitments of adulthood. Now, helped by the lifestyle of a professional sportsman, Will is intent on restarting his reading engine and setting course for the abundance of great literature that fills the shelves of libraries old and new.
Will co-founded The Danube Club because of his desire to restore some of the old magic to the books he read. And because he loves receiving things in the post...
Will would point to John Gray's 'Straw Dogs', 'The Time Traveller's Wife' by Audrey Niffenegger, and Ayn Rand's 'The Fountainhead' as being among his favourites. As destiny would have it, Will also hates cucumber.
"Perhaps all the dragons in our lives are princesses who are only waiting to see us act, just once, with beauty and courage. Perhaps everything that frightens us is, in its deepest essence, something helpless that wants our love." Rainer Maria Rilke
By the time Matt had finished school, he could count the number of books he'd actually finished reading on one hand. But through studying French and Russian at University, Matt awakened a love of literature that became a dear lifeline during those dark, melancholic nights he spent, deep in the Russian steppe.
Matt co-created The Danube Club as a way to build on his own cherished library, but also, to help support a young and vibrant literary community in London.
From his own library, Matt picks out Nabokov's 'Lolita', 'The History of Love' by Nicole Krauss and 'Waterland' by Graham Swift as some of his favourites. Matt retains a particularly intense dislike of cucumber.