A thoughtful, quite thorough study of the major independent regulatory agencies that is itself concerned with the public interest. Miss Sagarin first considers the group as an entity, and as an anomaly--legislating without electoral mandate, adjudicating outside the rules of court procedure, appointed by but not responsible to the President. Then there are the several agencies--the ICC, FTC, FPC, FCC, SEC, NLRB, CAB--and the background of the establishment of each, the laws under which it operates, its procedures and related problems. No two involve the same conflicts of interest, no two have followed the same pattern of development, which makes for more than routine interest. So do the cases cited throughout, as timely (for the FPC) as the great northeastern blackout and the Storm King controversy or (for the FCC) as the question of ""equal time."" Each chapter is suited to the needs of school assignments, the whole offers an initiation into the ""fourth branch of government,"" its strength and weaknesses.