Good morning bookies! Stand by for news.

*** The Spanish Civil War has often been called the preliminary for World War II. Fascists on one side, Socialist/Communists on the other. What would become the Axis backing one side, what would become the Allies backing the other. It was bloody as only a civil war can be and there have been countless books written about it. That doesn’t mean another one isn’t welcome, although the latest isn’t so much about the war itself, it’s about the journalists who wrote about the war. A writer writing about those who wrote. Verisimilitude, anyone? Franco meets the Matrix?

*** Recently, the Washington Post has revealed details of what information the FBI had gathered on Norman Mailer. There seems to be genuine surprise that the FBI kept a file on Mailer, and that surprises me. Seriously. Name something Mailer was not against at one time or another. That’s sure to draw interest, especially for an agency run by J. Edgar Hoover. It’s interesting in retrospect, history, but not at all surprising.

*** The L.A. Times reports that Joe Byams has died. Byams, who wrote on a number of different topics, was probably known best for his biographies of Humphrey Bogart and James Dean. He was 85.,0,6624967.story