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Join Me: The True Story of a Man Who Started a Cult by Accident [Kindle Edition]

Danny Wallace
4.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (104 customer reviews)

Print List Price: £8.99
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Book Description

Danny Wallace was bored. Just to see what would happen, he placed a whimsical ad in a local London paper. It said, simply, 'Join Me'. Within a month, he was receiving letters and emails from teachers, mechanics, sales reps, vicars, schoolchildren and pensioners - all pledging allegiance to his cause. But no one knew what his cause was. Soon he was proclaimed Leader. Increasingly obsessed and possibly power-crazed Danny risked losing his sanity and his loyal girlfriend. But who could deny the attraction of a global following of devoted joinees?

A book about dreams, ambition and the responsibility that comes with power, Join Me is the true story of a man who created a cult by accident, and is proof that whilst some men were born to lead, others really haven't got a clue.

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Product Description

Amazon Review

How could you refuse the polite invitation of begoggled Danny Wallace in Join Me? You don't know what you could be missing out on. It's all about living for the moment in this quirky, seemingly pointless yet addictive narrative. Finding himself with too much time on his hands after quitting his BBC job, Danny revels in "sitting around in his pants" and generally taking a break from the responsibilities of working life. Danny attends the funeral of his great uncle Gallus and finds out that he had set up a commune of like-minded people to escape Swiss small town small-mindedness in the 1940s. Intrigued by this idea, on his return to London Danny places a cryptic advert in the classified ads paper Loot and gets some surprising results.

His Norwegian radio-producer girlfriend Hanne is bemused and infuriated that this has become more than a transient interest; it takes over his life--and hers. The number of "joinees"--people replying to his ad--escalates as word gets out about this new "happy cult", but without a clue about what he wants to achieve, or do with all his newfound friends, Danny has to think fast as dissent rises in the ranks. Now the reluctant leader of a troop of random hopefuls, he maintains their interest with obscure e-mails and watches as his joinees meet and bond.

Whatever he had created, it was bigger than he had anticipated. From an initially puerile idea, it had grown into something of a social experiment--why were people willing to take the risk? What was lacking in their lives that they thought they might get out of contacting a stranger? Taking risks, no matter how big or small, is the essential crux of the matter here and of course, nothing ventured, nothing gained. --Angela Boodoo


"The hilarious true story of a bunch of strangers being swept up in a bored man's experiment" (Heat)

Product details

  • Format: Kindle Edition
  • File Size: 5679 KB
  • Print Length: 400 pages
  • Publisher: Ebury Digital (30 Mar. 2010)
  • Sold by: Amazon Media EU S.à r.l.
  • Language: English
  • ASIN: B003ELY7II
  • Text-to-Speech: Enabled
  • X-Ray:
  • Word Wise: Not Enabled
  • Enhanced Typesetting: Enabled
  • Average Customer Review: 4.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (104 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #29,735 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
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More About the Author

Danny Wallace is a Sunday Times-bestselling author who lives in London. His first book, Join Me, was described as a 'word-of-mouth phenomenon' by The Bookseller and 'one of the funniest stories you will ever read' by the Daily Mail. His second book, Yes Man - in which he decided to say 'Yes' to everything - became a hugely successful film with Jim Carrey in the lead role.

His column in ShortList magazine reaches more than 1.3 million readers weekly. He was the PPA Columnist of the Year 2011 and the Arqiva Radio Presenter of the Year 2012 for his work as the host of the triple Sony Award-winning Xfm Breakfast Show with Danny Wallace. GQ magazine has called him: 'One of Britain's great writing talents'.

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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
15 of 15 people found the following review helpful
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
Join Me is testament to how a crazy idea can bring people together for the good of others. It proves undeniably that the majority of people wish to help each other and sometimes they just need the smallest of excuses to do it. With a cast of odd characters the story goes from a silly idea by an exceptionally bored man to the whole scheme going wildy out of control to the heady heights of appearing on Belgium's top-rated TV show. This is most certainly a book with it's heart in the right place. Every joinee has learnt from the experience. Whether it's that a small, random act of kindness can have a big effect on the recipient, that strangers truly are friends we've not yet met, or perhaps just that it's not a good idea to look at pictures of peoples flats on the internet - and then mention it in casual conversation. Did I mention that the book is very funny? -- and by the way... It's not a cult, it's a collective. Only 2% of the vote? Damn.
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30 of 31 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Murder: Let's nip it in the bud! 2 July 2004
It appears I have actually been living in a cave, because the oddly successful Join Me campaign passed me by entirely in 2002 (and onwards). And also, I did read Are You Dave Gorman before this. That book was pointless, yet life-affirming - and it had something important to say about friendship, and being nice to people. Nothing you could quite pin down, though.
Danny Wallace's first solo book, detailing his quest to get 1000 people to "Join him", is hilarious. Like Are You Dave Gorman, it's occasionally a little convenient and hard-to-believe at best. But life imitates art, and strange things really do happen.
Also, unlike said novel, Join Me has a definite message, and Danny's collective isn't a "bored man's experiment" at all. It merely started as one. It's basically a religion, minus all the trappings of sermons and scripture, with just a single aim: make people happy by being nice to them. It's starkly simple stuff, and the sense throughout the novel that Danny truly doesn't see the scale of what he's done is rather humbling. Hundreds join him out of sheer curiosity and trust. Hundreds do good deeds, finally feeling they have the excuse and right to. After reading this, you'll be truly hard-pressed not to sign up.
If anything, the book makes the human race seem a warmer, more lovable breed than before. An absolutely touching, sweet (and more importantly), funny story.
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8 of 8 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars An Absolutely Fantastic Read! 4 July 2003
I have been aware of Danny Wallace's existence since the first BBC showing of "Are you Dave Gorman?", I have watched the series again and again, devoured the book many times and watched 'Dave Gorman's Important Astrological Experiment'. So because I found him a)extremely funny and b) really quite sexy I bookmarked his website to follow what he did next. Which is when I came across Join Me.
I came across the idea while I was bored one afternoon and emailed to say I wanted to join him. The responce was to send a passport photo and await instructions. You see this is where I am kicking myself, I never did, after reading 'Are you Dave Gorman'I was I admit, extremely nervous of as to where it might lead.
About a year later I found he was writing a book about the experience, I ordered the book to find out what I had missed, safe in the knowledge that Mr Wallace would have wrote an extremely good book no matter what the outcome of the collective. So let me tell you - I was not wrong. This book is brilliantly funny. It tells of why Danny set up the collective, what happened as he tried to get more people and the way the idea snow balled almost out of his control. The amazing lengths both the Leader and the Joinees have gone to are frankly astounding.
You have to buy this book, it fantastically laugh out loud funny and inspiring all at the same time. So buy, laugh and if you haven't already - Join Him!
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Send One Passport Sized Photograph to .... 4 Oct. 2003
Absolutely bloody wonderful.
All you need to join Danny's cult is a passport photo. You don't know what the cult's for or if it has any purpose whatsoever.
Loads of men remain addicted to what Danny's annoyingly sensible girlfriend calls "stupid boy-projects" and the book is a hymn to the child that sits within the man and refuses to dislodged by adulthood.
The naughty schoolboy sets up an aimless cult in memory of a dead Uncle whose similar attempts were derided. Danny dares not tell his girlfriend because he knows she will drag him back into the real, go shopping, meet acquaintances world.
The guilt he feels about this and the absurd excuses he concocts run through a book littered with wonderful, odd people and implausible meetings - the unfrench quintessential Frenchman, the duo who write jingles for Polish butter, the rock vicar, the evil usurper, loads of characters from fiction, all apparently living in the real world.
Look at the passport photo of Joinee Jonesy grinning at you from Chapter1. It's worth buying it just for that.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Inspiring and very very very funny! 17 July 2003
By A Customer
I thought that this book, Join Me, was utterly wonderful - I read it in one sitting and plan to start reading it again this evening... it is hilarious and caused more than a few strange looks to be thrown my way as I sat in a cafe after a heavy day of shopping, laughing loudly on my own. Very embarrassing but more than worth it!
The characters Danny meets along the way are all fascinating in their own way, and you can't help but wonder what it was that drew them all to Join Me in the first place
The fact that Danny started a cult by accident is hilarious - and the fact that he had no idea what to do with all his hundreds of new followers is more hilarious still!
And then when he decides what to do with them all... it's inspiring.
Hilarious and original. Like nothing else I've read.
Buy it!
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