I approached this volume as a complete newcomer to the writer. Some how, I must have missed him in my education that is horror reading.
Sometimes over-shadowed by his friend and fellow Weird Tales writer HP Lovecraft - Clark Ashton Smith's work has the same depth of quality, broad vocabulary and immense imagination of Lovecraft but veers more towards the sci-fi horror genre.
This is a collection of short stories & short novels - well-laid out & not really spoilt by the occasional typo which is in the volume. There is a neat little introduction & this is an ideal starting place for Smiths work.
The tomes are various, from creepy vaults on Mars to mystical hell stories, from classic horror to real 19030's sci-fi terror. I think the tales have aged very well & this is a credit to the writer. For a work completed so long ago, there are still some real scary/yuck moments - the text can still shock the unsuspecting reader - particularly in the story of a pair of necromancers who decide to rebuilt a dead city....
So, in a nutshell, we have a collection of pioneering sci-fi tales, many with other planet themes. I would suggest that if you love Lovecraft, you should venture in to sample this author as well. They are different authors with different themes but there is a connection apart from the fact that they were great friends. Both are clearly brilliant writers & very original.