Sir Arthur C. Clarke (December 16, 1917 - March 19, 2008) was one of the masters of Science Fiction. For over 50 years he wrote stories which amazed and delighted readers, and this collection helps bring together his short fiction in one place for fans to enjoy. Early editions of this collection were fraught with error, and so it has developed a poor reputation. From what I can tell, though, these problems have been corrected, and this is now a great collection for those who want to experience not only his greatest works, but also those which are not so great. You can see his development as a writer within these pages.
The quality of Clarke's work varies quite a bit from the earlier fanzine stories to his excellent work later on, which results in the overall collection having variable strength. There also appear to be some stories omitted, which makes this less than a complete collection, though certainly most of his works are here. You will certainly find great works such as "The Nine Billion Names of God", "The Sentinel", "The Star", "A Meeting with Medusa", and others, but for me those works are already easily found elsewhere, and the interest in this work was being able to read some of his rarer works, even if they weren't his greatest stories.
I can easily see why some would give this work less than five stars, especially if they had an earlier edition which had so many spelling errors and other mistakes in it. However, for me, it rates five stars because of the near comprehensive look at the short fiction from one of the greatest science fiction writers of all time.