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•   John le Carré, one of the most accomplished novelists of the late 20th century and early 21st century, using the spy novel as a way to probe notions of morality, betrayal, ethical ambiguity and patriotism, has passed way.  He was 89, and had been suffering from pneumonia.

The novelist, whose real name was David Cornwell, was areal-life spy when he wrote the novel "The Spy Who Came In From The Cold,": which allowed him to leave the service.  Among his other books:  “The Looking Glass War” … A Small Town in Germany” … The Russia House” … “The Little Drummer Girl” … "Smiley's People" … Tinker, Tailor, Soldier, Spy" … and "“A Constant Gardener."

•  Charley Pride, a former semipro baseball pitcher and smelter turned country music singer, who became the first major African American star in the genre with more than 50 Top 10 hits on the country charts, has passed away of  complications related to Covid-19.  He was 86.