The 1930s were the decade par excellence of foreign correspondents -- glamorous, trench-coated individuals who flitted in and out of world capitals interviewing top people who told them secrets of state. One of the best of these journalists established his reputation by writing books on current events that sought to demonstrate the thesis that "accidents of personality play a great role in history." His first such book, about the Europe of the dictators, was published in 1936. An enormous success, it was completely revised later that year and in 1938 and 1940. What is this author's name and what is the title of his first bestselling book?

All entries (one per person) must be clearly written on postcards and mailed to: Book Bag, The Washington Post, Washington, D.C. 20071, and must include complete return address and competition number. The winning entry will be the first correct answer drawn at random. Employees of The Washington Post Company and their families are not eligible to enter. Entries must be received no later than July 19. The winner's name and city of residence will be announced in the July 22 issue. A Washington Post Book World book bag will be sent to the winner.

ps9.5;ld10.2Answer to Book Bag #580: The poets who were aficionados of whodunits were T.S. Eliot, Morris Bishop, C. Day-Lewis (writing as Nicholas Blake) and Kenneth Fearing.

Winner: Becky and Art Henderson, Alexandria.