About The Club:
The English-language debut of Takis Würger, one of Germany’s most highly regarded young writers, THE CLUB is a blistering and timely novel set at Cambridge University, centering around an all-male dining club for the most privileged and wealthy young men at Cambridge and following an outsider who exposes the dark secrets of this group, the Pitt Club.
As a boy, Hans Stichler enjoys a fable-like childhood among the rolling hills and forests of North Germany, living an idyll that seems uninterruptable. A visit from Hans’s ailing English aunt Alex, who comes to stay for an entire summer, has a profound effect on the young Hans, all the more so when she
invites him to come to university at Cambridge, where she teaches art history. Alex will ensure his application to St. John’s College is accepted, but in return he must help her investigate an elite university
club of young aristocrats and wealthy social climbers, the Pitt Club. The club has existed at Cambridge for centuries, its long legacy of tradition and privilege largely unquestioned. As Hans makes his best efforts to
prove club material and infiltrate its ranks, including testing his mettle in the boxing ring, he is drawn into a world of extravagance, debauchery, and macho solidarity. And when he falls in love with fellow student Charlotte, he sees a potential new life of upper-class sophistication opening up to him. But there are secrets in the club’s history, as well as in its present—and Hans soon finds himself in the inner sanctum of what proves to be an increasingly dangerous institution, forced to grapple with the notion that sometimes one must do wrong to do right.
“Filled with love, sorrow, and beauty—from the cover to the final sentence.”—Elle (Germany)
“The Club describes the fine distinctions of class society as shrewdly and entertainingly as it talks about violent rituals at an English university . . . A truly great book.”
—Denis Scheck, ARD
“A wonderful book. The tone is almost fable-like, but the themes are painfully contemporary.”
“Real writers are few and far between. I believe that Takis Würger is one of them.”
—Thomas Glavinic, author of Night Work
“Toxic masculinity drips from the pages of Takis Wurger’s wrenching novel The Club. Lonely and broken, Hans is called to Cambridge University by his aunt and asked to infiltrate a prestigious and exclusive group of putative gentlemen. Boxing, class, and privilege swirl together, drawing Hans--and the reader--deeper and deeper into a glittering moral abyss. Vivid and all-too recognizable, the bad actors who have joined The Club will stay with readers long after they’ve closed the covers of this devastating book.”
-David Enyeart (Manager, Common Good Books)
Takis Würger is a reporter working for the German news magazine Der Spiegel. He studied Human, Social, and Political Science at St. John’s College Cambridge for a year before dropping out. During this time, he boxed for the University, broke two ribs and his hand, and became a member of the Adonians, the Hawks’ Club, and the Pitt Club. Named one of Medium’s “Top 30 Journalists under 30,” alongside other accolades, Würger’s work as a journalist has taken him to Afghanistan, Libya, Mexico, and Ukraine. The Club, which won the lit. Cologne debut prize and has become a runaway bestseller in Germany, is his first novel.
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