The answer to the decades-old baby boomer question—Who was Deep Throat? —was answered last week when news broke that an article in Vanity Fair would confirm that Carl Bernstein and Bob Woodward's ultimate anonymous source was W. Mark Felt, former deputy director of the FBI.

But almost immediately upon the answer came another question: Is there a book in this?

The answer to that falls somewhere between a middle schooler's "Duh" and an age-old reference to the Pope's religious persuasion. Of course there's a book in it; in fact, there are at least two. At presstime, agent David Kuhn was still shopping a book proposal by the Felt family, and S&S sources confirmed that a new Woodward Deep Throat book (with contributions by Bernstein) would arrive later this summer.

It stands to reason, I guess. If, as Peter Osnos opined to PW, there can be three books about Scott Petersen, there can surely be a couple about Deep Throat. After all, we've been once around this track already: All the President's Men (which is much about what Felt knew and when he knew it) was a hugely successful bestseller when S&S published it in 1974. In 31 years, its various editions have sold..."millions" is all BEA-harried S&S spokespeople could tell us at presstime... and—big surprise—their S&S paperback edition is selling particularly briskly right now.

It's possible that Felt's book (which some say is largely written, with the help of his family to jog his nonagenarian memory) will contain plenty of breastbeating about the morality of what he did, as well as evocations of the torture of keeping such a secret for so long. Woodward and Bernstein surely will reveal details of their relationship with Felt. Both books will enjoy a lot of review attention and magazine excerpting by and for the media junkies. But will the public care?

The scope and power of All the President's Men is hard to overstate. It is said that in the wake of Bob & Carl's s success and fame in the 1970s (helped by Bob & Dustin's dashing portrayals), the number of applicants to journalism schools rose significantly; it was cool, apparently, to be an ambitious, truth-seeking journalist. The success of the book by two newsroom guys had the same effect on the publishing business: eventually, writers like Jeffrey Toobin, Craig Unger, and of course Woodward himself, as well as whistleblowers (Jeffrey Wigand, Sherron Watkins, Richard Clarke) would have their pick of book contracts. The exploits of "Woodstein" spawned an industry.

And what an industry it has been: last year, for example, there were more political books on nonfiction bestseller lists than at any other time in recent memory. That said, I can think of only one political book in the post-Watergate era that has had as great an effect as All the President's Men. That book, for better or worse, was 2004's Unfit for Command. If Woodward and Bernstein's reporting had the power to bring down a president, the Swift Boat guys helped sink at least a presidential campaign.

But even that book didn't come close to ATPM as a totem of its very political time. And besides, that was then and this is now. In Sunset Boulevard, the aging screen star Norma Desmond proclaims that she's still big, it's just the movies that have gotten smaller. Watergate, and by extension Deep Throat, remains the biggest political event for a generation, but it remains to be seen whether it will still look that way to book buyers from a distance of three decades.