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Very Hot Topic (More than 25 Replies) best book on the modern and pirc? (Read 32685 times)
Stigma
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Re: best book on the modern and pirc?
Reply #55 - 11/17/06 at 02:35:12
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I have a soft spot for those books that contain FIRST lots of instructive explanations of typical plans and only THEN the concrete theory, which will then be so much more comprehensible (thus easier to remember and apply) for the average reader.

Favorite examples are "Pirc Alert" which taught me as much about dynamic pawn centres in general as it did about the Pirc, and Kindermann & Dirrs monumental "Französisch Winawer 7.Dg4 0-0"; Aagaard also tried it in his "Dutch Stonewall", which I haven't studied enough to evaluate. Such books require both pedagogical insight and a deep understanding of the opening's typical middlegame structures to pull off.  I dare say the strategic and deep Berlin Wall (by pure coincidence  Wink) is ideal for this format!

I know some masters think of all those explanations as wasted space, but they are not normally the main audience anyway...
  

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ano
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Re: best book on the modern and pirc?
Reply #54 - 11/16/06 at 22:16:55
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Starting Out 1 d4 is not in my view a database dump, far from it. I like it because it identifies some very key lines.  It would not surprise me if it took longer than 200 hours to write and that Starting Out d4 took longer because of the sheer breadth of the material.

I suspect Starting Out Sveshnikov would take longer as well- a lot of material to process.

What format are you thinking about for the Berlin Wall book? One format I like (speaking generally) was Well's book on the Tromp- using illustrative games with detailed notes and giving a choice of aggressive or positional lines. May not fit the Berlin though. The positions in that opening can also be optically messy and not easy to assess. Generally I like the illustrative games approach because you can see how top players approach the middlegames that result from the opening but there can be real "gaps" in the analysis.

I am guessing but I suspect Keano's suggestion of the tree of variations approach involves a lot of work on the part of a writer but it has real advantages (hopefully less gaps and more systematic presentation).


  
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Keano
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Re: best book on the modern and pirc?
Reply #53 - 11/16/06 at 12:24:24
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It makes sense that most of the opening books are going this way (games format) in that it is easier to put together and faster for the publisher.

Obviously these books can still be good efforts, but for me a true quality opening book MUST use the old tree of variations format, it simply cant be beaten  Wink
  
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IMJohnCox
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Re: best book on the modern and pirc?
Reply #52 - 11/16/06 at 11:16:00
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We know that Donner thought Velimirovic was a small, ferret-like, person, of course. But apart from that not much.

I’d love to write about some of these more obscure figures but I’m not sure the publisher would stand for it – marketing and so on.

It’s certainly going to take over a hundred hours to write a decent openings book, yes. Of course it depends on many things. Joe Gallagher told me that Starting Out King’s Indian took him a fortnight, and when I expressed surprise he pretended to think I was surprised it had taken so long, and started making excuses about how he had his children to look after two days a week. But that’s a very good book indeed for what it’s trying to do. Of course Joe is very familiar with the material.

As a guide, I’d say 200 hours to do a Starting Out guide. Starting Out d4 probably took rather longer because there’s a wider range of material to choose what to present from than with just one opening. That’s to do the raw games and text; all the inserting diagrams, laying out, editing and so on is done by other people. Whether that produces something worthwhile rather than a database dump you’ll have to judge!
  
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MNb
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Re: best book on the modern and pirc?
Reply #51 - 11/16/06 at 02:54:41
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IMJohnCox wrote on 11/10/06 at 21:21:38:
After that I'm doing a book for Quality Chess on the Berlin Wall, which I'm looking forward to, and then one for Everyman called Gambiteers, covering five players of that ilk (probably Morphy, Tchigorin, Marshall, Bronstein and Morozevich, IIRC, although that's not set in stone - in fact any other candidates gratefully received).


A few more obscure names, which might deserve a mention:

Tassilo Von Heydebrand und der Lasa was according to some people even stronger than Staunton and played quite some gambits.
The Swede HAW Lindehn is the inventor of the Danish Gambit and beat Steinitz with it. I have only four games of him, so some research will be necessary.
And what about Dragoljub Velimirovic? The man of the sacs Nxb5, Nd5, Nxe6 and Nf5 against the Sicilian also has played several Göring Gambits. What do we really know of him? The man has grown older, but has not changed that much:

Velimirovic,D (2535) - Pavlovic,M (2505) [B40]
Panormo zt (4), 27.10.1998
1.e4 c5 2.Nf3 e6 3.d4 cxd4 4.Nxd4 Qb6 5.Nb3 Qc7 6.Nc3 a6 7.Bd3 b5 8.Be3 Bb7 9.f4 Nf6 10.0–0 d6 11.e5 dxe5 12.fxe5 Nfd7 13.Rxf7 Kxf7 14.Qh5+ g6 17.Qh7+ Bg7 18.Bh6 Qb6+ 19.Kh1 Bxg2+ 20.Kxg2 Qc6+ 21.Kg1 Nf3+ 22.Kf2 1–0

Of course the position after 13.Rxf7 pleases the eye in a diagram.
  

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ano
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Re: best book on the modern and pirc?
Reply #50 - 11/15/06 at 20:22:39
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Keres in his younger days is another possibility and I am not sure many of his early games would be familiar to readers. Of course there are a number of books that are readily available covering his career.

Morozevich is of course a very enterprising player who can play slightly offbeat openings. I was interested in John's comments about him in Starting Out d4 which I have just acquired from Amazon.com. Is he really regarded as one of the best middlegame players around but perhaps slightly handicapped by offbeat openings?

I enjoy chess books and while opening books will always be of interest, collections of games based on themes (in this case gambiteers) sounds like a worthwhile concept. My preference is for less but well annotated games. I notice Timman is doing something not that dissimilar with his book on attack and earlier books on Bv N.

Which leaves one question, how long does it actually take to write an opening book assuming one is looking to write something worthwhile rather than a database dump? Obviously it will differ per writer and per book but is it true it can take hundred plus hours even with the benefits of chessbase and the internet.
  
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TalJechin
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Re: best book on the modern and pirc?
Reply #49 - 11/14/06 at 10:14:51
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Mmmm, global warming... Malmö is +10 degrees again atm, not bad for November!  Smiley (an average of +10 over 24 hours is actually the definition of summer up here.)

Quote:
Vitolinsh - true; bit of a minor figure of course, but still. There's a good chapter about him in one of Sosonko's books.


Yes, Russian Silhouettes is where I first read anything about him. The 'minor figure' is perhaps a bit unfair, since we tend to compare players with their 'compatriots' and in the Soviet Union he was certainly a minor  but I don't think he was weaker than e.g. Marshall.

Anyway, personally I'd be more interested in the less worn out names - so Tschigorin is a good choice! Especially if you could invest some time & effort into short bios and a picture or two...

Others worth looking at, though I'm not sure if they could be defined as Gambiteers per se, would be players like Stein, Nezhmetdinov, Shabalov, Kupreitchik, and to be nationalistic - Gösta Stoltz - well, there's a long list of possible subjects once you start thinking about it...  Undecided
  
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IMJohnCox
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Re: best book on the modern and pirc?
Reply #48 - 11/13/06 at 17:26:08
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Mike T; true but Everyman have just done a stand-alone book on him.

Vitolinsh - true; bit of a minor figure of course, but still. There's a good chapter about him in one of Sosonko's books. He committed suicide by jumping off a bridge on to a frozen river, I think. Impressive really - you couldn't do that these days what with global warming.
  
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Mike Thomas
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Re: best book on the modern and pirc?
Reply #47 - 11/11/06 at 21:07:28
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An obvious suggestion is Spielmann - after all, wasn't he called the "Last knight of the King's Gambit"?
  
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TalJechin
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Re: best book on the modern and pirc?
Reply #46 - 11/11/06 at 17:16:50
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IMJohnCox wrote on 11/10/06 at 21:21:38:
After that I'm doing a book for Quality Chess on the Berlin Wall, which I'm looking forward to, and then one for Everyman called Gambiteers, covering five players of that ilk (probably Morphy, Tchigorin, Marshall, Bronstein and Morozevich, IIRC, although that's not set in stone - in fact any other candidates gratefully received).


Perhaps Alvis Vitolinsh could qualify? I don't know too much about him, except that he played the Cochrane gambit as a matter of honour and his name always kept coming up in the sharp sidelines in my old theory books  - besides, he has his own gambit in the Nimzo Indian...  Wink
  
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IMJohnCox
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Re: best book on the modern and pirc?
Reply #45 - 11/10/06 at 21:21:38
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After that I'm doing a book for Quality Chess on the Berlin Wall, which I'm looking forward to, and then one for Everyman called Gambiteers, covering five players of that ilk (probably Morphy, Tchigorin, Marshall, Bronstein and Morozevich, IIRC, although that's not set in stone - in fact any other candidates gratefully received).
  
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ano
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Re: best book on the modern and pirc?
Reply #44 - 11/06/06 at 20:05:29
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John & Edward

What are your next book projects. John I know you are writing on the Sveshnikov. What other books are lined up. Dragon 2 Eddy?
  
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Re: best book on the modern and pirc?
Reply #43 - 11/02/06 at 15:36:16
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Lol! Very amused by that last one. Congrats on the IM title, btw. When did that happen? Let's catch up at 4NCL (assuming I ever make it back to England...)
  
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IMJohnCox
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Re: best book on the modern and pirc?
Reply #42 - 11/02/06 at 14:54:44
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My grandfather was a painter and decorator, Eddie. When he died he left me his trousers to wear at chess tournaments.
  
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Re: best book on the modern and pirc?
Reply #41 - 11/02/06 at 11:37:48
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This clearly illustrates that lawyers are lazy, they have so much spare time they can even write whole books on chess Grin
  

If nothing else works, a total pig-headed unwillingness to look facts in the face will see us through.
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