I remember walking into a science fiction book store while visiting New York City in 1984. A crowd had gathered around an older gentleman who wore a silver flight jacket. At first I thought it was only a local geek smoffing off, but when he turned around, I saw that he was none other than Arthur C. Clarke, there to promote the release of 2010. I was reminded of this incident when reading Astounding Days, Clake's memoirs of his long love affair with the premier American SF magazine of the 1930s and 1940s. It is written in a very conversational style with the author tossing off asides in every direction with no sense of writing discipline, much like he surely did that day long ago. Clarke was fortunate to have come of age just as Astounding was making its debut. Many of its stories would go on to become classics. He makes special mention of the 1934 issues. Then, the reader was treated to the serialization in succeeding issues of Jack Williamson's The Legion of Space, "Doc" Smith's Skylark of Valeron, and John W. Campbell's The Mightiest Machine. I remember being similarly blown away when I happened to open up the bound volume of that year's issues while browsing through the stacks at the University of Illinois Library. Clarke reminiscences on many of the writers and stories published in Astounding that made an impression on him during those years including H.P. Lovecaft, Stanley Weinbaum, Ray Cummings, Robert Heinlein, A.E. VanVogt--as well as many lesser known works that have not stood the test of time. One interesting tidbit is his aside that Astounding magazines typically reached Britain in those days as ballast on freighters. Interspersed with this discussion of the stories are his memoirs of growing up as a young fan in prewar England and involvement in such SF groups as the British Interplanetary Society.