These twenty-one lit'rary fairy tales were "written during a span of nearly twenty-five years" and are indeed not what you'd expect -- being more precious by half than Joan Aiken's usual fare. About half of the stories do manage to build on a kind of polished charm -- "The Boy Who Read Aloud," "The Third Wish," "Some Music For the Wicked Countess," and "More Than You Bargained For" (a more domestic fantasy featuring a magic phonograph record) being the more successful. But the six-inch high Perrow family in "Doll's House To Let, Mod. Con." certainly lacks the resourcefulness of The Borrowers, and the ghostly "Humble puppy" is more creepy than cute. This thick volume combines stories from three English collections by Aiken (A Harp of Fishbones, A Small Pinch of Weather, All and More), and though its fey frailties are not our favorite Aiken mood, her fans might make a contact here and there.