Two works of intermediate length are published together in this volume by the colossus of science fiction. The protagonists are both young men whose dissatisfaction with the stagnation of their respective societies leads them on quests for change and growth; one visits the legendary Comarre, and the other finds his destiny in the stars. "The Lion of Comarre" is a longish short story featuring Richard Peyton III, a young man who, much to the dismay of his illustrious family, loves gadgets - a waste, since his society believes that everything that can be invented already has been. Having bigger dreams, however, he goes off to find the secret of the legendary Comarre, a self-contained city built by a long-dead ancestor. With the help of an amicable lion, he overcomes the dangers of the citadel, and discovers its long-buried secrets. "Against the Fall of Night" is closer to a short novel, and was actually rewritten by Clarke as the novel The City and the Stars. In this story, Alvin feels trapped in the isolated tower city of Diaspar, the last great refuge on Earth. Its inhabitants possess immortality, but are still constrained by their fear of the world outside. Alvin does not share their fear and finds his way to the previously unknown city of Lys, where life is short, but people have mastered the art of telepathy. Alvin continues to make more discoveries, finally revealing secrets that rewrite the history of humanity, and eventually point to the stars. There are plenty of interesting ideas thrown around in these two stories, although in neither case does Clarke develop them as fully as he perhaps should have. Both characters are flat, uninteresting, mere charicatures of inquisitive young men. As such the shorter "Lion" works better, since it tries to do less and has a tighter plot. "Night" has very little more substance to it story-wise, since it's just the same "discovery" plot over and over as new wonders are uncovered. As to the wonders themselves, they're clearly intended to be the stars of the show; but to today's readers, intelligent machines and underground transport centers may seem like pretty standard sci-fi fare. This book is recommended for younger readers just discovering science fiction, since there is no exclusively adult content, but more experienced readers will probably want something meatier.