Marcel's Letters: A Font and the Search for One Man's Fate

Marcel's Letters: A Font and the Search for One Man's Fate

by Carolyn Porter


View All Available Formats & Editions
Members save with free shipping everyday! 
See details


An IPPY Gold Medal Winner. Paris Book Festival Winner. Finalist for the Minnesota Book Award

A graphic designer's search for inspiration leads to a cache of letters and the mystery of one man’s fate during World War II

Seeking inspiration for a new font design in an antique store in small-town Stillwater, Minnesota, graphic designer Carolyn Porter stumbled across a bundle of letters and was immediately drawn to their beautifully expressive pen-and-ink handwriting. She could not read the letters—they were in French—but she noticed all of them had been signed by a man named Marcel and mailed from Berlin to his family in France during the middle of World War II. As Carolyn grappled with designing the font, she decided to have one of Marcel’s letters translated.

Reading words of love combined with testimony of survival inside a labor camp transformed Carolyn's curiosity into an obsession to find out whether he ever returned to his beloved wife and daughters after the war.

Marcel's Letters is the incredible story of Carolyn's increasingly desperate search to uncover the mystery of one man’s fate during WWII, seeking answers across Germany, France, and the United States. Simultaneously, she continues to work on what would become the acclaimed P22 Marcel font, immortalizing the man and his letters that waited almost seventy years to be reunited with his family.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9781510739079
Publisher: Skyhorse
Publication date: 11/13/2018
Edition description: Reprint
Pages: 352
Sales rank: 352,600
Product dimensions: 6.00(w) x 8.30(h) x 1.00(d)

About the Author

Carolyn Porter is a graphic designer, typography geek, and founder of the graphic design company Porterfolio. She designed the font P22 Marcel Script, which garnered five awards, including the prestigious Certificate of Typographic Excellence from the New York Type Director’s Club. She lives in White Bear Lake, Minnesota.

What People are Saying About This

From the Publisher

"Carolyn Porter takes us on her offbeat quest to solve a transatlantic history mystery and unearths an intriguing pocket of our past along the way." —Megan Smolenyak, author of Who Do You Think You Are? The Essential Guide to Tracing Your Family History

"We pick a font hoping it says something about us: that we are creative, intellectual, or have business know-how. But what happens when a font picks a graphic designer and turns her world upside down and inside out? In Marcel's Letters, Carolyn rescues one man's legacy, and ultimately gifts us with her own." —Elizabeth Rynecki, author of Chasing Portraits

In Marcel's Letters Carolyn Porter has plucked a powerful story from the recesses of history. After purchasing a trove of letters because of their elegant script, Porter embarked on a quest to solve the mystery of their authorship and in so doing embarks on a historical awakening of her own." —Cathryn J. Prince, author of American Daredevil: The Extraordinary Life of Richard Halliburton, the World’s First Celebrity Travel Writer

Customer Reviews