I love books that explain to me how we ended up where we are (and do so in story form).
If you are curious about Spain's fascist past, read "Death of a Nationalist" by Rebecca Pawel. (It was published in 2003 so isn't going to be on Barnes & Noble's "new books" table, but should be easily found in any bookstore that has a rich mystery section or by searching the internet.) It was an Edgar Award Winner.
It's a history/mystery that takes place during the Spanish Civil War with an unusual point of view: the growing moral quandary of Carlos Tejada Alonso y Leon, a member of the fascist Guardia. Pawel pulls no punches when it comes to depicting the casual brutalities spawned by the war, but it is a humane depiction of a divided people. And Pawal's research is meticulous. Kirkus Reviews called it "an intriguing juxtaposition of the political and the personal."
There are two follow-up books in the series; I didn't like them as much as the first, but for those who need closure, they exist.