As usual, no governing principle for these 24 far-flung items gathered in the name of A.H.--they can be as old and over-anthologized as Bierce's ""The Damned Thing,"" as long and complicated as Ross Macdonald's near-novella, ""The Bearded Lady"" (Lew Archer concerned, unsurprisingly, with missing paintings and buried hates), as pure detection as Bill Pronzini's dandy ""Proof of Guilt,"" or as pure supernatural as two weirdly moving pieces--Jack Finney's ""Hey, Look at Me!"" and Theodore Sturgeon's ""The Other Celia."" Veronica Parker Johns and Talmage Powell pull off neat crime-doesn't-pay twisters, with malefactors thoroughly zapped; Patricia Highsmith draws a youthful killer-psycho's portrait with a cool objectivity that is more chilling than the murders themselves; John D. MacDonald slaps down a chunk of straight, goodguy/badguys suspense; and Nancy Swoboda offers yet another Jack the Ripper theory. But best of all, no matter how familiar: Roald Dahl's ""Edward the Conqueror,"" the triangular tale of a man, a woman, and a cat who used to be Franz Liszt. Relatively few stinkers in this bunch, and if variety is the spice--it's a veritable spice garden.