After everything else has been noted about the current scene in American adult books, the commentators usually get round to noting that for various reasons, both obvious; and odd, ours is not going to be an age known for humor in either the lively or the publishable arts. In terms of books, anthologies put together from adult materials and aimed at a younger reading audience are a partial answer to a continuing lack. There are 20 chapters here. 4 might have been"" omitted without being missed-- games, poetry, riddles and famous quips. The most important point to notice about the remaining 16 is that they are different. Anthologists have the regrettable habit of walking through each others' tracks, but that has been avoided. You won't find the most familiar Thurber, although Thurber is represented, nor the most often chosen piece from the Gilbreths although they are here. The title is unfortunate. Can anything make a reader sadder than the direction to laugh? However -- good recreational reading.