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Photo courtesy of the personal collection
of Robert E. Simon Jr.
In His Own Words:
Stories from the Extraordinary Life of Reston's Founder,
Robert E. Simon Jr.
by Kristina S. Alcorn
People are talking about In His Own Words:
Chatting with Bob: Virginia author shot the breeze with Reston's founder
By John Kelly Columnist, The Washington Post
In 1998, Kristina S. Alcorn sat next to Robert E. Simon Jr. at the Hunter Mill District Democratic Committee Lasagna Dinner, an annual event in the Virginia town Simon had conjured up from his imagination: Reston.
Kristina listened as Simon spun yarns about his most-interesting life, then in its 85th year. Are you writing this stuff down, she asked. When Simon said he wasn't, she offered to. She called him the next morning, eager to get started.
(...See full article)
Reston Has Always Inspired a Sense of Wonder
By Peter McCandless, Viva Reston Lifestyle magazine
Myths & Monsters of Reston, Virginia, written by two Reston friends (Eric MacDicken & Kristina S. Alcorn) who grew up listening to tales of the Bunny Man, the Nudist Colony, and other mysteries helps us discover our own inner child.
Thanks to the curiosity, energy and determination of longtime Reston resident and author Kristina S. Alcorn, the world has now been treated to the extraordinary life and big ideas of Reston's founder. In her 2016 book In His Own Words, Alcorn invites us to listen in to hundreds of hours of intimate interviews with Reston's larger-than-life creator, taped over a period of many years.
Bob Simon loved children and was a colorful storyteller! Although he passed away [at age 101] as In His Own Words was being written, he would have clapped with delight at the imagination and creativity that Myths & Monsters of Reston delivers. He would have applauded the authors' goal to encourage families to get outside and enjoy the natural beauty of Reston. It was one of the seven, original goals of his master plan: "Beauty is a necessity of the good life."
(...See full article)
"Bob was a force of nature. Kristina's interviews with him capture his love of life, his style and his humor, his passions for people, the arts and adventure; they also demonstrate his gifts as a charming raconteur. If you heard some of these stories from Bob in person, you will smile. If you are hearing them for the first time, you may be amazed."
"Yes, it is in his own words! I could hear Bob speaking and at one point was waiting for him to offer me some Danish Akvavit! It's a wonderful introduction to those who didn't know Bob Simon, and should, and a cherished souvenir for those who did know him and need their dose of Bob from time to time."
Director of Carnegie Hall Archives & Rose Museum
"I didn't know Bob's early life before reading Kristina's captivating interviews but was delighted to see in his cheerful telling of childhood travels in Europe, of teaching himself 'not to be intimidated,' of negotiating (successfully) with banks during the Great Depression, the larger-than-life Bob I knew as a friend and advisor to my nonprofit. Bob was a visionary who never lost faith in big ideas. His heart - and maybe his father's admonition when he was six to 'take care of your mother and sisters' - was the core of his vision of 'community!'"
Judy Scott Feldman,
Founder and Chair of the National Mall Coalition
"Reading In His Own Words is like sitting in a cozy cafe talking with an old friend. In his own buoyant voice Bob Simon tells us vivid stories about his culturally rich Manhattan childhood, his trepidation at becoming President of Carnegie Hall at age 23, and his passion for creating an urban New Town from scratch in the woods and fields of Northern Virginia. For those of us who knew and loved Bob Simon reading these stories is a treat. For those of you who want to learn about this remarkable man In His Own Words is a great place to start."
Former CEO of the Reston Association
Order your copy today
Available in Paperback and Limited Edition Hardcover.
6x9, 152 pages
Great Owl Books
© 2016 Kristina S. Alcorn
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