The often guilt-ridden and perplexed parents of the estimated seven million ``latchkey children'' in the United States today are in tremendous need of practical guidance. These authors, a journalist and two child-care experts who prefer ``home-alone kids'' as a more positive term, discuss a number of important issues: how to decide whether your child is mature enough to be home alone, plan the best home-alone care, judge your child's adjustment to it, balance it with work, and know what to do when it is not working. While the advice is basically sound, the treatment is unfortunately repetitive and gimmicky in its overreliance on parental self-tests and questionnaires. This is not the first book on this timely subject; nor, one suspects, will it be the last. An additional purchase for public libraries.-- Marcia G. Fuch, Guildford Free Lib., Ct.