I was twenty-one years old and wanted to be beautiful. I was beautiful. Nobody here would notice that I wore a women’s blouse, spoke in the Saxon dialect, and had never before taken care of an elderly person.
April 1989: Shortly after his trip to West Berlin, Dirk finds himself working as a caregiver in the Grunewald Residence. Not that he had any training. Not that he had ever wanted to stay. He had far greater plans! Like back in the day, when in his hometown of Schopkau, he won the Russian Olympiad and the regional Spartakiade in roller speedskating – and was an informant for the Freie Deutsche Jugend. He wants to be a writer, a great poet! Or, at least, somebody else than he is.
Inhabiting alternative identities and invented biographies, Dirk cheats his way through his Wonderworld: Playing a vicious dog for a trans prostitute, dancing for Ceausescu on the streets of New York, and mimicking a learned psychologist while high on ecstasy.
Jörg Rehmann’s debut novel is a tragicomic cabinet of curiosities drawing on his childhood in East Germany and the gay scene of 1990s Berlin.