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Retirement. Publishers, thank you for the many years of reading pleasure you gave me, but all good things must come to an end. Due to failing eyesight I am forced to retire. I can no longer review your books, and any that you send will be donated to the local library, unread. Do not send any more. I can only read for a couple hours every day, and this does not allow me to finish a book in reasonable time. I will be devoting time to my own books from now on, and reading on a personal level. Books that interest me. I prefer paperbacks and hardbacks, not eBooks. My eyesight has been failing the last few years, and I cannot handle hundreds of review books any more. My books are still available for review. Anyone interested in reviewing any of them, they are found in the Link to Tom’s Books On Amazon. Contact me for pdf copies at

Monday, July 1, 2019


Astounding (SF/Biographies)
By Alec Nevala-Lee
Dey Street Books
ISBN #978-0062571946
Price $16.50 (hardback)
Price $13.39 (Paperback)
544 Pages
Rating 5-Stars

“A Monument To The Past”

Astounding was the leading science fiction magazine in the Golden Age of SF. When John Campbell took over editorial control the stories became more believable than the previous soap opera appearing in the news rack magazines of the day. The authors submitting to Astounding knew that their stories better show real science and nuts and bolts technology if they wanted published in John Campbell’s magazine. Three such authors were Isaac Asimov, Robert A. Heinlein, and L. Ron Hubbard. This book covers them and John Campbell in biographies that dig into their backgrounds, showing not only their talents, but also their faults. It also looks at the women behind the men. It’s a history that looks into the magazine in that period when Astounding led the field.

I was captivated by the stories I heard about these men and women. As a young reader in the early 1950s, I discovered Astounding and the other SF magazines, and read everything I could find, especially these authors, but also other science fiction masters like A.E. van Vogt, Ray Bradbury, George O. Smith, and the rest. For those of you that want to learn more about Astounding and the Golden Age of science fiction and the authors, I highly recommend this book.

Tom Johnson

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