CHESSCAFE: CARSTEN HANSEN REVIEW 18:
Earlier this year I reviewed Beliavsky and Mikhalchishin's book
C78, the monograph from Sahovski Informator. Now we have
another book on the market covering the same lines.
The Polish IM Panczyk is fairly unknown to me, whereas co-author
Emms is one my favorite authors of opening books. Panczyk covers
the Archangel (1 e4 e5 2 Nf3 Nc6 3 Bb5 a6 4 Ba4 Nf6 5 0-0 b5 6
Bb3 Bb7), whereas Emms takes care of the New Archangel (1 e4
e5 2 Nf3 Nc6 3 Bb5 a6 4 Ba4 Nf6 5 0-0 b5 6 Bb3 Bc5) and the
Møller Defense (5...Bc5).
The first part of the book (chapters 1-8) covers the Archangel proper. The coverage is
in many aspects encyclopedic, with very little text and an abundance of analysis.
I have to admit that I'm very impressed with the depth and the thoroughness of
Panczyk's work. His analysis is superb and he has a wealth of original ideas which
clearly comes from having analyzed and played this opening for many years.
With the absence of a bibliography, it's difficult to tell which material has been
available to the authors, but despite C78 having been on the market for quite a while,
it is quite clear that Panczyk has not had access to this work. Often his evaluations
differ tremendously from those of Beliavsky and Mikhalchishin; from time to time
their main lines are barely covered by him, while at other times it is the other way
However, it seems to me that Panczyk to a much larger extent than Beliavsky and
Mikhalchishin is relying on correspondence games, a source of information that for
many authors is fairly unknown. This is quite unfortunate taking into consideration
how many quality ideas are introduced by CC players.
As mentioned the New Archangel and the Møller Defense are covered by Emms.
While he does have some new ideas, there are certainly not as many as offered by
I took a quick look at what I had written when I reviewed C78, and Emms once again
shows his reliability to present something original: 1 e4 e5 2 Nf3 Nc6 3 Bb5 a6 4 Ba4
Nf6 5 0-0 Bc5 6 c3 b5 7 Bc2 d6 8 d4 Bb6 9 h3 0-0 10 Be3!? Bb7 11 Nbd2 Re8 12
Re1 exd4!? 13 cxd4 Nb4 14 Bg5! Nxc215 Qxc2 h6 16 Bh4 g5 17 Bg3 Nh5
(Beliavsky and Mikhalchishin suggested two new ideas 17...Re6!? and 17...d5!?, both
of which I have my doubts about. Emms instead continues with the main game) 18
Bh2 (Jansa-Martinovsky, Wrexham 1998), and here Emms suggests the new idea
18...Qf6!, planning ...Qg6, with a complicated game.
Comparing the work by Panczyk/Emms with the one by Beliavsky/Mikhalchishin is
not a particular easy task, since both works contain a lot of original material, analysis
and improvements over existing theory. Those who are serious about studying these
lines probably should not try to do without either book.
Archangel and the New Archangel is a strong effort that deserves serious attention;
readers will not be disappointed.
My assessment of this book: 4 stars out of 5