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Very Hot Topic (More than 25 Replies) Andrew Martin's New Book is out now (Read 13505 times)
geo5
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Re: Andrew Martin's New Book is out now
Reply #28 - 08/19/04 at 17:07:04
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I have enjoyed this book, I picked it up at thinkers' press shop on a cross country road trip. While the organization is sometimes frustrating, it is a worthwhile contribution to my KID library. My only question is a) is that Andrew on the cover(I think so.) and b) who is Buckley? Smiley cheers
  
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GMTonyKosten
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Re: Andrew Martin's New Book is out now
Reply #27 - 08/13/04 at 04:05:27
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Who would imagine that a simple book could arouse such passions, and who is this mysterious Gunter? Undecided
Incidentally, Did anyone get the CD with the book?
« Last Edit: 08/13/04 at 07:19:48 by GMTonyKosten »  
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Geof Strayer
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Reply #26 - 08/06/04 at 08:12:45
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Wow, quite a disparity in the impressions of "King's Indian Battle Plans!"  I guess different people are looking for different things in a book like this.

I just received my copy of the book in the mail about 2 weeks ago, and I've only made it through about a third of the book (it's a big book!).  Still, I thought I'd weigh in with my opinion.   Wink

First, I don't want to hurt IM Martin's feelings (and probably won't), but there are some problems with this book as a purely theoretical work.  Some of the analysis is dated, some of his conclusions are rather subjective, etc.  So don't buy this book if you are looking for an up-to-date, perfectly objective theoretical summary of the entire King's Indian.  (Not sure what book you would buy though.  Maybe there has been a recent ECO published on the opening.  But ECO pretty much sucks these days....)

Second, and notwithstanding the first point, I think this is a wonderful book!  It is simply chock full of ideas (or "Battle Plans," if you prefer) and great games, the vast majority of which are well-analyzed and placed in their theoretical context.  (I think I remember someone stating in this thread that this book was something like a database dump.  This is pure nonsense.  There has been a lot of work put into this book, and it shows.) 

I played the King's Indian as my main defense to 1.d4 in the late '80's and early '90s at the master level, and having gone through just a third of this book I feel that my understanding of certain lines and typical positions and their possibilities has improved substantially.  (Of course, I never really understood it that well when I played it, a fact that was reflected in my rather poor results with the opening.) 

I can't really speak to how much of this book is reflected in IM Martin's previous work on the ChessPublishing site, as I haven't done a comparison.  However, there are obviously substantial additions due to the dates of the games (there are a lot of games from 2003 and some from 2004 in the book).  And having all the material in a physically attractive book (which I think this is) is very convenient.  But it has over 240 annotated games (with a lot more without annotations in the notes)!  It's a massive book, full of interesting stuff, some of which is already on ChessPublishing.  So what?  I just don't understand the complaint about duplication.

Thirdly, I think this book and most of the advertisements for it are pretty much up front about what this book is intended to be.  It is a book of ideas, as played in many absorbing, dynamic struggles between strong players.  Sure, if you're wondering what the latest theory on the Shirov exchange sac in the Bayonet Attack is, you won't find that here.  (You will, however, find twelve nicely annotated games that will probably improve your understand of the ideas behind the Bayonet Attack.)  But that kind of theory is changing all the time, and every book on the King's Indian will be somewhat out-of-date by the time it is published.  (That's why you subscribe to ChessPublishing!).  I highly doubt that any player below, say, IM strength, could go through this book seriously and not significantly improve his or her understanding of the King's Indian.  And understanding is more important than knowledge of up-to-date theory; or rather, without understanding such knowledge is virtually useless.

I have sort of a love-hate relationship with the King's Indian.  As mentioned above, I had a fairly miserable record with it when I played it, compared to how I was doing in other openings.  At the same time, I beat a few IMs pretty badly with the opening, mostly because the King's Indian is like that, and when things go wrong for White they tend to go terribly wrong.  And there are so many wonderful games in this opening! Not just the games where Fischer or Kasparov rolled some fellow world-class GM, but the games between regular GMs and IMs as well, which are often full of tension and dynamism.  One of my most vivid chess memories is participating in the post-game analysis of King's Indian game in which GM Stefan Djuric (as Black) had beaten a local master, a game in which Black's attack seemed to come out of nowhere and then continued on for some 20 moves.  Again and again in the post-game analysis Djuric would refute our suggested improvements of White's defense with these simply amazing sacrificial lines.

Finally, you could also just view this book as a collection of such games, and (for me at least) it is more than worth the price of admission simply as that.  So for a number of reasons (some possibly unique to me but many, I suspect, not) I really like this book.  And I am looking forward to finishing the remaining two-thirds.  Grin

     - Geof
  
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jrcooke
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Re: Andrew Martin's New Book is out now
Reply #25 - 04/17/04 at 13:43:08
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  Inspiring ! Cheesy

  John
  
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Re: Andrew Martin's New Book is out now
Reply #24 - 04/06/04 at 13:58:28
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Hi Andrew,

it's great that you have answered this topic!!!
Well, I am still reading the book, and there are really a lot of interesting games and much to learn! So I guess I can say that I don't regret buying it!
But, as I was also looking for a kind of up-to date theoretical coverage of the KID (something that has not been done in a long time...) I was a little disappointed!
For instance, I don't really understand what you recommend vs the Bayonet (is it 9...c6???...is the main line really bad for black????) or vs the Classical (after say, 9. Ne1 Nd7 10.Be3 and 13.a4...)...is 7...Ng4 really bad????
well, a lot of interrogations as you can see  Wink
  
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Re: Andrew Martin's New Book is out now
Reply #23 - 04/05/04 at 13:57:36
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  Hello everyone,

I noticed that there has been some debate about my recent book.

Firstly let me say thank you to all who have contributed to this forum. I am grateful for the compliments and note the criticism carefully for future projects.

I think if I had my time again some things about the book would be different but I'm generally convinced that anyone studying the games diligently will learn a lot and become a much better KID player in the process.

14 years of full-on childcare has blasted me somewhat but I was determined to try and write something worthwhile. However, I can see now why some people might be disappointed or why they feel in parts the book is inconsistent. Nevertheless....in my opinion the good far outweighs the bad.


Finally I'd like to say that I think Victor Mik is  a great writer and that we'll all benefit from his penetrating insight into the KID. Smiley


Best,  Andrew

  
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Re: Andrew Martin's New Book is out now
Reply #22 - 03/25/04 at 11:40:55
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Well well well, very interesting stuff indeed, it would seem that my post has struck a nerve and for some reason some of you seemed to have been offended by it. That's a shame as that was not the intent.

Gunter seems particularly peeved for some reason, and for one so passionate it surprises me that he is too lazy to even bother to register on this forum as a member but would rather just repeatedly log on as a guest.

Regarding my previous post I make absolutely no apologies as I call it as I see it. Quite frankly Andrew is capable of much better, he is a talented writer and to whom much is given much is expected.

Admittedly I have not read the book and I said as much, however, I am a gold member at Chesspublishing.com (All 12 sites, at least I think they are 12) and noticed that the reservations and disappointment expressed by Krugman and others about Andrew's new book matched exactly the way I felt about his work when he ran the KID website.

Regarding references to my playing strength, let me just say that one need not be a Gourmet Chef to know when food is delicious and when it is not. Gunter, if you find Andrew's recent book delicious, then all the better for you, as for me, I have a more discerning palate.    

Regards

Top  Grin
« Last Edit: 03/30/04 at 15:26:55 by TopNotch »  

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Re: Andrew Martin's New Book is out now
Reply #21 - 03/25/04 at 04:21:45
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Easy, tiger ...
  

If sometimes we fly too close to the sun, at least this shows we are spreading our wings.
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Gunter
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Re: Andrew Martin's New Book is out now
Reply #20 - 03/24/04 at 16:49:53
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  We're getting a bit closer to the truth now but don't ask me to have anything other than contempt for weak players with a big mouth who just want to get some kicks criticizing. Like that topnotch dickhead. It's not just this book but a whole range of other chess products and books.

  Of course there are various vested interests in the chess world whose job it is to see that certain books or products do NOT succeed .

  A whole new topic!

  
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Re: Andrew Martin's New Book is out now
Reply #19 - 03/24/04 at 14:36:18
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yes I would be glad if Andrew could answer this...once again, I would like to emphasize that I am not criticizing either Andrew or his book just because it is fun...if the book had been great and had live up to my expectations I would have been the very first to congratulate andrew...I know (well, not really but I imagine) how hard it might be to write a chess book...but I am a consumer and as such if I pay I expect to have a high quality product...and for me, this book is not high-quality...
maybe one could say that my expectations were too high...but I don't think so...I am just asking for some consistency...but I like some parts of the book, and I think I will enjoy going through the annotations...
as for the proof, I think you can find them in one of my posts...
but I understand your point of view, and why some people might like the book...
  
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Gunter
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Re: Andrew Martin's New Book is out now
Reply #18 - 03/24/04 at 13:49:38
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  Hey Krug, it's easy to say a guy is getting sloppy or that his books are rubbish or that he's getting old and just can't cut it anymore in the chess world etc .

  So,with respect to you I ask Top Notch ( huh) direct- give some evidence to back up your words. That's all.

   The internet has spawned a whole new generation of chess book reviewers. Would these guys ' put the work in ' and write a chess book. No,they prefer to condemn.

   For me Martin's book has obvious flaws but the vast majority is good, if not very good and sometimes brilliant. I can make up 2/3 different opening repertoires from this one book!. We haven't heard much about that though 'cause it's more fun to criticize.  Kinda pathetic.


  Maybe Martin could respond to all this.
 

  
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krugman
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Re: Andrew Martin's New Book is out now
Reply #17 - 03/24/04 at 11:49:09
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hey gunter do you really read the posts????
he's just saying that Andrew is getting inconsistent...nothing about the book...
but say that the book is inconsistent and I have read it!!!
  
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Gunter
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Re: Andrew Martin's New Book is out now
Reply #16 - 03/24/04 at 07:06:07
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  The last post is unreal.He is slamming the book and he hasn't even read it or got it!!

   Yeh,right

   Take care guys...
  
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Re: Andrew Martin's New Book is out now
Reply #15 - 03/23/04 at 19:18:18
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I totally agree with Krugman and  Geophys Grin

In recent years Andrew Martin has become less and less reliable as an analyst and as Klugman has already correctly pointed out he changes his assessments of a given position or move almost weekly. Such inconsistency tells me he doesn't spend much time analysing KID positions anymore, but is more concerned with meeting deadlines.

Let me add that I do not have his recent book, nor after reading all of your enlightening posts would I get it. I too demand a bit more rigour and integrity and if an Author wants my bucks, he better put in the work, none of that wishy washy stuff.

Don't get me wrong, I luv Andrew's witty and readable writing style but I noticed even when he ran the KID site his analysis was mostly wishy washy and contradictory and while his updates were always prompt they rarely showed any real personal input in terms of analytical depth.

There is absolutely nothing wrong with an ideas book, but ideas cannot be divorced completely from a rigourous analysis especially in the KID, furthermore an ideas book needs to be very systematic and assessments objective and consistent. Andrew needs to lift his standards again, to what they once were.

Right now the best KID books out there, ideas or otherwise, are by Joe Gallagher and John Watson these guys Live, eat and breath the KID and there boundless enthusiasm and deep understanding comes through strong in all their works and is quite infectious and inspirational.    

Andrew's best work on the KID to date remains his 1989 work, entitled "Winning with the King's Indian" this fabulous effort could well be his Magnum Opus and though dated I would highly recommend it. Ironically it was around 1989 that Andrew was actually playing the KID, which only goes to show that your writing and analysis tends to be more convincing when u practice what u preach.    

Take care guys

Top  Grin
« Last Edit: 03/24/04 at 16:30:02 by TopNotch »  

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krugman
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Re: Andrew Martin's New Book is out now
Reply #14 - 03/23/04 at 05:16:51
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yes, I own the book and I did read it!
Maybe I shall say again that I am not flaming the book just for my pleasure but because I find the book at times inconsistent I can't stand inconsistency in a chess book...
compiling and commenting on games is nice but is not the only job an author has...
you can compare this book with, for instance, Rowson's book on the grunfeld which is also an "ideas" book, and he's consistent, doesn't give 2 different evaluations for the same line...
  
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