Horizon City is described by the author as a literary documentary about the life of his eccentric great-uncle Chuck Stork, son of a textile baron in the east of the Netherlands, pioneer of the aircraft industry and womanizer. The subtitle, which translates as An incomplete and not necessarily always historically accurate portrait of a family of fired-up Mennonites, magnates, small-game hunters, country-house builders, collectors, polygamous adventurers, dreamers and brave women, reflects the nineteenth-century aura of excitement. Scattered through the text are photographs and documents out of a suitcase that came into Scholten’s possession in 2012, and these too evoke a long-gone era of adventurism. They are included without captions, thus heightening the desire to read the text. This approach is reminiscent of the writings of W.G. Sebald, who used images as a device to give colour to a personal story and evoke parallel associations.
The interior is printed in two colours, a greyish black and aubergine. These are effectively used to indicate chapter openings, to play with the pictorial matter and the borders of individual images, and to mark the footers. In sum the panel liked this book because it occupies such a singular and well thought-through place in the sea of literary non-fiction and fiction. The design employs comparatively simple means to create an attractive and exciting reading and looking experience. Author and designer have addressed themselves to the material thoughtfully and with evident pleasure.