Niven's classic short story "Inconstant Moon" leads off this anthology, which was compiled in a very interesting way. Spider Robinson picked his favorite story - Niven's - and then asked Niven to pick his favorite, and so on. The result is a diverse collection that includes the duel scene from The Princess Bride
(my introduction to that lovely book), Anthony Boucher's "They Bite", Sturgeon's "Need" (if you've never read that one you need
to), and a pocketful of other gems.
My favorite part of the book: the foreword, where Robinson defines his role as "bringer-of-wonders." Everyone knows somebody like this, or IS somebody like this - that person who can't resist turning you on to the new book or piece of music they've discovered. And most of the time you find yourself saying, wow, where did you find this? (Although sometimes you say, good god, don't give me *another* book to read, I'm not done with the last one yet!) I can attest to his skill in that role - he waxes rhapsodic about John Koerner's 1969 recording Running Jumping Standing Still
, to the point where I went out and bought a copy on CD. It was worth it.
This book was issued as an Ace paperback during that imprint's early 80's heyday and is long out of print. If you spot a copy at the used bookstore, get it.