Below are short notes on the individual stories:a rating, title, author, brief description or reminder to myself.I think I started reading this collection in Nov 2007.I started recording my thoughts here in Feb 08.Reading a story or two between novels when it's convenient to have a shorter length material to read.

This hardback consists of two previously published collections of many authors' works, selected and with notations by Asimov:The Future in Question, and Space Mail.

My overall impression is a nice collection.Anaverage of my below ratings is 3.3* overall, 3.1* for Future and 3.4* for Mail.I seem to prefer mediocre sci-fi stories to mediocre stories of other genres.I also note that while there were plenty of stories that I didn't personally find notable, of 37 total entries there were 19 I rated as 4* and 2 I rated as 5*.I look fwd to re-reading the 4s and 5s sometime.A wide number of writers are represented, so this also serves as a great introduction to many "old-school" authors.I definitely recommend to SF fans!

THE FUTURE IN QUESTION
*** What's It Like Out There? by Edmond Hamilton (coming of age, public vs. private thoughts/expectations)
*** Who Can Replace a Man?by Brian Aldiss (non-horror view of machine intelligence)
**** What Have I Done? by Mark Clifton (morality and humanity questions)
**** Who's There? by Arthur C. Clarke (fun)
**** Can You Feel Anything When I Do This?by Robert Sheckley (recommend to myself to check out other work by this author)
*** Why? by Robert Silverberg (one resolution for some existential questions: why explore? what's the point?)
** What's Become of Screwloose? by Ron Goulart (humorous, but it didn't really work for me, maybe not the author's fault, as I'm not known for my sense of humor)
**** Houston, Houston, Do You Read? by James Tiptree, Jr. nome de pen of Alice Sheldon (LOVED it!Was really caught up in the original, obvious danger (was anxious, was annoyed at interruptions in my reading at that point) and then intrigued by the gender and other questions raised.)
? (didn't note at time and can't remember how well I liked it) Where Have You Been, Billy Boy, Billy Boy? by Kate Wilhelm (teen angst of the future, same as the present)
*** If All Men Were Brothers, Would You Let One Marry Your Sister? by Theodore Sturgeon (Questioning sexual norms;Reminds me of Heinlein, but not as effective.)
* Will You Wait? by William Bester (humorous, I get it, but it just didn't work for me)
*** Who Goes There? by Joseph W. Campbell (good creepy changeling tale)
**** An Eye for a What? by Damon Knight (interplanetary miscommunication)
**** I Plinglot, Who You? by Frederik Pohl (alien plot to have earthlings destroy each other is foiled)
*** Will You Walk a Little Faster? by William Tenn (aliens (who have a "prime directive" type law in place) want us to accept a weapon from them that will help us destroy each other faster, and without destroying the real estate (planet Earth) in the process (like nuclear weapons do); good, short and sweet, but I wasn't keen on the ending.)
* Who's In Charge Here? by James Blish (I just didn't get this one.Super short.I think it's about some aliens posing as beggars that are going around incognito collecting information about us (since we all ignore beggars).But I don't get the ending part, and I have no idea the answer to the title question.I must be clueless.)
**** The Last Question; by Isaac Asimov (A great example that science can exist peacefully with religion.And I love it.It's very hopeful.)

SPACE MAIL
**** I Never Ast No Favors; by C.M. Kornbluth (entertaining, humorous, light story of petty criminal who spends probation on a farm where he findsthe unexpected)
**** Letter to Ellen; by Chan Davis (should scientists try to create humans from "scratch"? kind and thoughtful story)
**** Space Opera; by Ray Russell (Just a nice short adventure tale with a funny side.)
**** The Invasion of the Terrible Titans; by William Sambrot (Short, fun, clever.And "tight" - no longer than necessary.)
*** That Only A Mother; by Judith Merril (I was creeped out by this, and not in a pleasant way. 2* based on it was too icky for me, but 4* based on effective writing, so I end up with 3*.)
** Itch on the Bull Run; by Sharon Webb (Just didn't do much for me, but its me probably.Humorous story.)
***** Letter to a Phoenix; by Fredric Brown (Uplifting although cynical story of the uniqueness of humanity.)
**** Computers Don't Argue; by Gordon R. Dickson (Horrifying - a short story scenario along the lines of M. Crichton: "the worst possible outcomes of new technology".Disturbing and stressful.In other words, effective!)
**** Letters from Laura; by Mildred Clingerman (Very funny story of time travel as a marketable commodity.)
** Damn Shame; by Dean R. Lambe (We fall prey to our own disrespect for the environment.Maybe I would have liked it better back when it was written.Today it is a tired theme.)
**** The Trap; by Howard Fast (Long, almost novella, about raising the first supermen...I enjoyed, but the ending, which felt authentic, is also bleak.)
**** Flowers for Algernon; by Daniel Keyes (Sad story from the POV of a retarded man used in an "intelligence increasing" experiment.)
**** The Second Kind of Loneliness; by George R.R. Martin (When a socially insecure man goes to a solitary space post for 4 years, does he become more or less lonely? does he increase or decrease his desire for human contact?)
** The Lonely; by Judith Merril (Story about genders, told through alien reference material about humans.B/c from alien point of view, it was a little too obfuscated for me to "get it" on the first read, and I didn't get enough from it to be motivated for a second read. But I feel this is more about me (or the mood I was in) than the story itself.)
* Secret Unattainable; by A.E.vanVogt (About an advanced Hitler-backed sci research project.This one didn't do much for me.)
*** After the Great Space War; by Barry N. Malzberg (Who's opinion counts most - the low-rank man-on-the-scene, or the high-rank man entrusted with keeping his troops in line? One answer....)
**** The Prisoner; by Christopher Anvil (The moral:never disregard an alien corpse.)
*** Request for Proposal; by Anthony R. Lewis (A bureaucratic nightmare...Too bad its just an exaggeration of what bur. often produce.)
**** He Walked Around the Horses; by H. Beam Piper (A cool alternate history.)
*** The Power; by Murray Leinster (The mystery power wielded by a demon could just be a science beyond our present grasp.)