Leading off with a topnotch 20-year-old Rex Stout novella (""Murder Is No Joke,"" from Stout's And Four to Go quartet), EQ's eye for quality proves fairly sharp in this varied coven of 22--most from the early Seventies. Standouts include a classic Edmund Crispin short-short; reliable Ruth Rendell, with two elderly bosom buddies going for each other's throats; and Joyce Harrington's ""The Plastic Jungle,"" in which a fed-up daughter semi-purposely murders her psychotic Jewish mother, using a department store as the weapon (strange but true--and splendid). Otherwise, nothing very special--Joyce Porter's Inspector Dover being tedious, Isaac Asimov's ""Black Widowers"" being talky, a Barry Perowne Raffles recreation, etc. Only a Rod Reed silliness (""Give Me Lib, or Give Me Death,"" featuring Nora Woof, Hillary Quinn, Goldilock Homes. . . we'll give him death) is a downright paper-waster. A solid smattering--especially if that sterling Stout is not on hand in its 1958 form.