Fifteen reprints dating from the venerable past (Conan Doyle, Dorothy Sayers, Michael Innes) to the other day (Ashley Curtis, John Mortimer, Arthur Porges). Though all the stories are highly competent, most are bloodless, and the emphasis provided by the medical context robs many of the unknown-poison and clever-doctor stories of their novelty. Of the three standoutsInnes's malicious conjurer's trick, Mortimer's tart anecdote of domestic malice, and Curtis's deftly layered tale of innocents abroadthe apparatus of medicine is central only to the Innes. And even though most of the remaining stories feature medical sleuths (Lawrence G. Blochman, Edward D. Hoch, William Pomidor) or hospital settings (Libbet Proudfit and Mary Monica Pulver, Robert Halsted, Nelson DeMille, Anthony Marsh, Lawrence Block), many of them get along with disappointingly little help from the medical establishment. Truth in labeling, then: The title should be Murder Almost Medical.