In only its fourth year of publication, this upstart anthology sweeps the honors from Edward D. Hoch's much longer-running series (see above) by dint of including everything in sight. You'll find not only Doug Allyn's Edgar-winning ""The Dancing Bear,"" but all the other Edgar-nominated stories by Brendan DuBois, Brenda Melton Burnham, Justin Scott, Lawrence Block, and Bill Pronzini; not only Ian Rankin's Gold Dagger-winning ""A Deep Hole,"" but the other shortlisted nominees by Jo Bannister, Ed Gorman, and Liz Holliday. In addition to Peter Straub's jazz novella ""Porkpie Hat,"" the offerings include stories by Max Allan Collins, J.A. Jance, John Lutz, Sharyn McCrumb, Nancy Pickard, and Dana Stabenow, with top honors going to ""The Man Who Hated Television,"" one of Julian Symons's last and trickiest stories. Edited and introduced as if by a committee (as, presumably, it was), but still a terrific bargain, and the year's anthology of choice.