Do we really need eight Madoff books?

It was only days after Bernard Madoff was charged with securities fraud, but there were already two proposals for Madoff books. Now, according to  Leon Neyfakh writing for the New York Observer's Media Mob, there are eight.

Back in December, literary agent Richard Abate, who represents journalist Richard Behar who will be writing one of those two first books, predicted that with two solid projects already in the offing (one is Behar's, to be published by Random House in 2010, the other is by former NY1 reporter Andrew Kirtzman, to be published by HarperCollins also in 2010), "I think publishers will think long and hard before signing up a third book."

Apparently not.

Business reporter Erin Arvedlund will be writing a book called "Don't Ask, Don't Tell" for Penguin's Portfolio imprint scheduled for publication in 2010 and Phoenix Books will be rushing out "Catastrophe," a biography to be published in March.

Then, according to Neyfakh, "As of late last week, there were fully four Madoff-related books on the market that had not yet found homes."

Wow. That's a lot of Madoff books.

Anything published as early as March is unlikely to tell you anything you won't have already read in the press. However, an early book does serve a purpose – for people who can't get enough Madoff, it pulls everything together in one place.

As for the later books, there are some worthy contenders in that group. We'll have to wait to 2010 to see if there's one that pulls ahead of the pack.

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