By reading the information on the copyright page, the reader will note that the stories in this book have been culled from over a half dozen publications, possibly many more. As such, it seems reasonable to assume that they were written over a span of a great number of years. I would have found it helpful had the original copyright dates of each entry been included so one could, in some ways, track Bradbury's development as a writer.
Having said that, I did enjoy this book for the very variety that seems to have put off some of the reviewers here. There are stories that are pure Sci-Fi, others that are perfect examples of the horror genre, some that make us want to laugh and/or cry, and many that combine several of these aspects.
One of the latter that I found particularly moving is "Lafayette, Farewell." In it, an elderly man who knows that he is to die soon begins to relive the air battles he fought as a fighter pilot over France during World War I. Every night, he sees and hears the planes of those brave young men who died as he successfully shot their planes out of the sky. He now feels guilty over taking the lives of those innocent young pilots who, like himself, were sent into a war not of their own making.
He fears that he will be consigned to hell for what he has done, and he asks his neighbor how he can, at this late date, be forgiven. His neighbor suggests that, since they, in their planes, are appearing over his house nightly before parachuting to their deaths in his back yard, he plainly and simply, ask them for their forgiveness. In a very moving scene, he does just that and they indicate that he is forgiven.
This is really a touching story, one of my favorites in the book. There are others equally rewarding to read along with some that are among Bradbury's lesser works. I for one, am glad to see as many of Bradbury's stories as possible anthologized in books such as _THE TOYNBEE CONVECTOR_. I'm afraid that those that aren't, and which appeared in more obscure, older Sci-Fi magazines, may be lost to us forever. In my opinion, all of his writing is worth preserving for readers of the future.