The second sentence in The House of Hunger is: The sun was coming up. It must have seemed pretty sunny and promising on the plane after the initial difficulties. But then the third sentence reads: I couldn’t think where to go. With Dambudzo things always had a way of falling apart just at the moment when they seemed most promising. In Berlin he was promptly arrested by the frontier police and threatened with deportation to London. By the time he was rescued by the conference organizers, the news had spread through the conference halls that a writer was being detained. The festival, tagged “Berlin International Literature Days,” had brought to Berlin almost all the prominent African writers: Bessie Head, Chinua Achebe, Wole Soyinka, Dennis Brutus, Nuruddin Farah, and many others. When he finally arrived at the festival hall, Marechera—perhaps the youngest writer there at twenty-seven—was already a star. Though his name was not on the leading list that night, he was given the opportunity to read. He gave an impassioned reading from The House of Hunger, which was greeted by a standing ovation, and from that moment on, the German media had discovered a hero. The truth is that the audience had never met an African writer quite like Marechera before—a man with such a sense for the dramatic, a man to whom the boundary between the fictitious and the real is so thin as to be almost nonexistent. He was hijacked from the main conference by another, left-leaning, group who had organized an alternative conference and who now wanted him to give a press conference on his “travails” in the hands of the German police.