Mr Menthol

By Frank Krake

Format: Paperback

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Arcadia Books

Arcadia Books deal in the best of world literature, today. Publishing translated fiction, literary fiction and crime.

Product Description


Mr Menthol recounts the extraordinary life of Joseph Sylvester, the man who brought toothpaste to Holland. A sensation upon its Dutch publication, the book is both an account of a magnetic entrepreneur and a charged, triumphant tale of interracial love.

Fleeing extreme racism in the United States, Sylvester sets up in Holland, selling what was then a novel product: Menthol Toothpaste. Amsterdam-dwellers crowd his market stall to see the man in the debonair top hat with the blindingly white smile. Among them is a Dutch model, Rose, who will eventually become Sylvester's wife.

Their love is the central force of the book, surviving social discrimination and the horrors of Second World War: Sylvester is sent to a Nazi prisoners' camp, managing to secure his own escape by growing close to the guards. In the wake of this traumatic period, they manage to slowly rebuild their lives, running a successful rabbit farm until Sylvester's death.

Rich in historical detail and weighted with profound emotion, Mr Menthol was a bestseller in Holland, as well as being shortlisted for the prestigious Dutch Hebban Award for Best Non-fiction in 2016.

Additional Information

Additional Information

Format Paperback
Imprint Arcadia Books
Publication Date 13 Sep 2018
ISBN 9781911350385
Number of Pages 364

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