GM2 Dutch Update

Avrukh has added a line to the GM2 update. You can find it in the free e-books section.

42 thoughts on “GM2 Dutch Update”

  1. One thing I am very upset with Qualitychess about is that they don’t get their authors to use all relevent sources. Isn’t qualitychess trying to make their books as good as possible? Getting their authors to use all relevevant sources would really improve the quality of their books. Here is a part of John Watson’s review of “Playing the Queen’s Gambit”:

    “Continuing with a theme from previous reviews about research, Schandorff’s Bibliography has several of the key books of the last few years, but it is rather limited. Without my doing a full literature search, I checked some unlisted books that came to mind: James Rizzitano’s How to Beat 1 d4 (2005; one of the two standard books about the Queen’s Gambit Accepted), which has an interesting suggestion in Schandorrf’s main line, and his 2007 Chess Explained: The Queen’s Gambit Declined; both are discussed in previous columns. James Vigus’ important Play the Slav (2008) has at least one important suggested improvement upon the analysis of the main line of 6 Ne5, and some relevant extra material. John Cox’s 2006 Starting Out 1 d4! suggests all of lines that Schandorff does in the QGD Exchange, the Slav (6 Ne5), and the Semi-Slav (6 Bg5), etc., and would have been good to cite. Cox even suggests 12 Qa4 in the Tarrasch QGD. Let me be very clear: every section of Playing the Queen’s Gambit is extremely well analysed and thought out; these are certainly not important things in the larger context. I do feel, however, that, especially since he lists six definitely out-of-date books from 2000 to 2002, it would have improved the book in a modest way had he looked more closely into the recent literature.

  2. I disagree with Watson’s review on this point. We have all three books but unlike Lars did find them relevant to what Lars was writing about. We probably should have put the books on the list, but we as we did not use them, we chose not to.

    Your criticism is actually completely off the mark when you include that at least one other publisher do not do anything to have other people check all relevant sources and simple copy&pasta “complete” bibliographies into the books. At least I have seen a few phony bibliographies like this. We actually spend a lot of time checking lines, both in books and analytical, before the publish the books.

    Obviously Watson did an honest review, but this time I am not sure he is absolutely on the money.

  3. Sorry for changing the subject but what ever happend to The Complete Queen’s Indian Defence by Tapani Sammalvuo?
    Is it going to be published any time soon?
    Is it possible to get some more info on Ftacnic’s book (maybe an excerpt), regarding the lines he’ll be analysing?
    Is it correct that they’ll be a series on Cutting Edge ? Any excerpt/further info on that available?

  4. While checking some of the proposed lines in GM Repertoire 2 I found something which makes me worry. Chapters 15 and 17 propose the move order 1.d4 f5 2.Nf3 Nf6 3.g3, while Chapter 16 uses another move order: 1.d4 f5 2.g3 Nf6 3.Bg2 delaying Nf3 for a later stage (of course we can swap a little bid the moves in order to keep our main move order d4, Nf3, g3 etc.). Is there any reason for that or this is a kind of omission. Thanks

  5. The move order issue is because we ran out of time and could not check everything – although we tried. I think 2.g3 is slightly more accurate, but I am not the author.

    The QID book was cancelled. Tapani’s attention was drawn in other directions.
    The first cutting edge book is only weeks away. An excerpt only days.
    We will put up an excerpt for Ftacnik’s book when we have it, including the contents page.

  6. @M.A.S.

    Another thing that many authors don’t use is engine books like MyBook or Storm which are sometimes as much as a year ahead of conventional sources in sharp variations like the Najdorf. This is a big ommission and there are countless interesting ideas in these many engine books – especially the highest rated ones.

  7. @Al

    I should note that this is a general remark and not aimed specifically at QC. Moreover, engine books are not entirely objective because authors choose what they want to play and may select only won games for the other color to make the engine stronger playing against a particular line. However, they’re still a valuable resource. I remember that in some Catalan line with Nc6, Bb4+ and an eventual Nd5, engine books followed Avrukh’s analysis until one bishop move, Be8 after many moves which seems to equalize. Avrukh had listed Bc8. Though in my experience, the engine books are most valuable for 1. e4 players and Najdorf Sicilian players since that’s almost all they play.

  8. Hi Al, I will keep it in mind. The Najdorf book is written, but for future projects it is probably a good hint.

  9. Carl Cederstam-Barsk

    How about making a GM Repertoire about the currently most GM opening of them all:
    The Petroff? It would be a great thing for every 1…e5 player that wants the sharp lines of this opening combined with the Quality Chess expertise in a single book.

  10. Jacob Aagaard :
    I disagree with Watson’s review on this point. We have all three books but unlike Lars did find them relevant to what Lars was writing about. We probably should have put the books on the list, but we as we did not use them, we chose not to.
    Your criticism is actually completely off the mark when you include that at least one other publisher do not do anything to have other people check all relevant sources and simple copy&pasta “complete” bibliographies into the books. At least I have seen a few phony bibliographies like this. We actually spend a lot of time checking lines, both in books and analytical, before the publish the books.
    Obviously Watson did an honest review, but this time I am not sure he is absolutely on the money.

    You should have told Lars that these books were relevant to what he was writing about and that they have improvements to his analysis so he could have tried to come up with improvements to these books analysis

    Another example of an author not references all sources is Mihail Marin’s Beating the Open Games. He doesn’t reference any of the key books on 1 e4 e5 such as Play the Open Games as Black, The Chess Advantage in Black and White, Play 1 e4 e5!, etc. Here are just 2 small examples that come to mind show that Marin’s book would have been better if he had referenced these sources:

    1 e4 e5 2 Nf3 Nc6 3 c3 Nf6 4 d4 now Marin gives the move 4…exd4 a ?! due to 5 e5 but Play the Open Games as Black and Play 1 e4 e5! show that after 4…exd4 5 e5, 5…Nd5 is simply fine for Black.

    1 e4 e5 2 f4 Bc5 3 Nf3 d6 4 Nc3 Nf6 5 Bc4 Nc6 6 d3 Bg4 7 h3 Bxf3 8 Qxf3 now he says 8…Nd4 is innaccurate and givesd it a ?! due to 9 Qg3! but here only considers 9…Qe7(?!), 9…Nh5(?!), and 9…Nxc2+(?!). If he had referenced Play 1 e4 e5!, he would have realized that 9…0-0 is fine for Black.

    I am writing this to try and convince you guys to get your authors to reference all relevant sources which I think would improve the QUALITY of your books.

  11. But the problem is that there, to use an example, was NOTHING in the Vigus book that challenged the repertoire.

    Play the Open Games was well out of date and the moves not computer checked. I disagree that there was relevance with this one.

    The Kaufman book was, as far as I remember, not out when Marin wrote his book. Fortune telling is not a speciality of ours :-).

    Obviously we have missed ideas and sources – but as far as I can see, not in these cases.

  12. Chess Book Lover

    I believe Kaufman’s book came in 2004 and the first edition of Beating the Open Games must have been 2007.

  13. Pepiño pichon

    @Jacob Aagaard

    A bit ironic, aren´t you? I believe that I’m not the first one saying that you sound a bit pretentious. It seems that you don’t like constructive criticism very much, do you?

  14. Abramov Anjuhin

    Jacob, for a moment I saw in the Coming Soon Section an add for HARDBACK edition of Cutting Edge: Open Sicilian 1 by PAVLOVIC (remember that “c” is at the end, you misspelled the authors name). Am I right?

    When can we download your CATALOG 2010? You don’t have to put front covers if you don’t have them.

    Can you launch BUILD YOUR CHESS books in HARDBACKS? I’m the buyer?

    Please give us excerpts from coming books from march/April, a specially from GM Rep Sicilian. Thank bro:)

  15. Pretentious? I am not going to say something else than what I think on this blog.

    We have not had the time to make a catalogue. It will happen at some point, but the coming soon section covers a lot.

    It is near impossible to do hardback without doing a full print run, so it is about future titles.

    I will update the coming soon section next week.

  16. I’ve got my copy of GMII and wow… it is impressive! Thank you very much Avrukh and Quality Chess! 🙂

    On a minor note, I have not yet found the line that Grandmaster Dmitriy Gurevich plays frequently in US tournaments, i.e. 1.d4 Nf6 2.c4 a6, planning a Benko-like …b5 in some cases. I think I’ve heard him call it the “Dzindi-Indian” in honor of GM Dzindzichashvili who first pioneered it.

  17. hi
    i am a fm from austria and found a hole in avrukhs second book. on page 131 he suggests 6.bd3 as most promising option against 5…nbd7 in the czech benoni and states that the fianchetto setup works not so well against …g6 and …bg7, quoting the game hort-tringov 1976 where black was all right.
    on page 117 (chapter 10 – reluctant benoni) in the line A3 8…ne8 9.e4 he examines three continuations that in his opinion are the most natural (9…h6, 9…f5, 9…bg4) but not 9…nbd7 transposing to hort-tringov 1976. this position could also be reached with the modern defence move order.
    its the only point worth criticizing.
    kind regards
    georg kilgus

  18. Personally, I would be much happier if the THEORETICALLY TESTING lines were examined in as much detail as possible rather than investigating sidelines that a6 line, but if both can be done – great. 😀

  19. @Al
    I know! It’s not that big of a deal. Please don’t compare me with the people who want a refund because 1…h5 wasn’t covered 🙂

    Dmitriy Gurevich DID play it against Shulman so it’s not like it’s total crap. I thought I read somewhere that GM Avrukh might do a PGN of some minor lines he missed, so I just wanted to point out this rare and bizarre line just in case he wanted to address it. If not, it doesn’t bother me.


  20. There are other bizarre options not included in the book. Boris has done an update on the moves he found truly interesting, namely the Dutch. There will be no more updates at this point.

  21. About being blunt. I am busy. This blog offers people a chance to ask and be answered, but not for polishing their egos. I don’t intend to be pretentious or insulting and don’t think I am.

    When people start with: “One thing I am very upset with Qualitychess about is that they don’t get their authors to use all relevent sources. Isn’t qualitychess trying to make their books as good as possible?” they have involved themselves in a blunt discussion.

  22. Thank you for all your points about GM2. I still cannot believe that we actually published a 616 page book. We could easily have made it two books – others might have made it three.

    Anyway, we will check the lines at some point and if we ever do an update, we have them covered.

  23. I’m a little confused by a Czech style move order:

    1. d4 g6 2. c4 Bg7 3. Nf3 c5 4. d5 d6 5. Nc3 Nf6 6. g3 O-O 7. Bg2 e5

    This position is covered in “The Reluctant Benoni.” However, flipping to the Czech Benoni section, Avrukh recommends:

    1. d4 Nf6 2. c4 c5 3. d5 e5 4. Nc3 d6 5. e4 g6 6. Be2

    Is Black move ordering us with the first variation? Or is it more accurate to say that he’s move ordering himself with the second variation. In any case, it was a little strange to me that Black could choose to get an improved Czech Benoni… instead of us playing the same lines. Although, I understand that Black has more options than g6 in the second line so e4 is stronger anyway.

  24. Also, I’d need some help with this line:

    1. d4 g6 2. c4 Bg7 3. Nf3 c5 4. d5 d6 5. Nc3 Bxc3+ 6. bxc3 f5

    or even:

    1. d4 g6 2. c4 Bg7 3. Nf3 c5 4. d5 d6 5. Nc3 f5

    Unfortunately, I can’t find coverage for this in Avrukh;s book and the Bxc3 line is popular and scores horribly for White. Is there a way to avoid these or something I’m missing here. Doesn’t playing g3 earlier run into other move order issues?

  25. Which on-line companies are you not at war with? I ordered my copy of this book from and months later it still has not shipped.

  26. You can buy books at chess4less for example. and even at what is your problem? Do you work for

  27. First of all, the U.S. customers seem to be getting screwed here. The exchange rate is ridiculous. Price your books in dollars so we can get a fair deal. $45 for a single softcover opening book after shipping is a little too expensive. These things aren’t printed on gold paper. You might price yourself right out of business.

    Second, on top of other delays shipping worldwide, Quality Chess seems to have started a war on on-line retailers, purposely delaying book shipments, so the second volume of the book that I pre-ordered along with the first volume to save on shipping hasn’t arrived months after everyone else has a copy.

    The retailers who they hand pick seem to artificially inflate prices and add ridiculous amounts of shipping.

    @Markus: No, I don’t work for Do you work for Quality Chess?

    Great books though, guys! Keep up the good work.

  28. Michael. First of all, your use of language alone should get you thrown off the blog, but I actually want to address your questions.

    * We don’t sell directly to and thus it has to go through a number of hands before it reaches them. I would guess at least three pairs. Nor do we sell directly to Amazon or other major websites. This means we get a smaller cut, and thus that it is not greatly in our interest to sell to them quickly.

    * Another part of the aspect is that books sold in the US, unless through Chess4Less, who have them sent over by airfreight, are sent by boat. It just takes 2-3 months. I can assure you that the books are sent to that boat at the same time as they are sent to our warehouse in Poland.

    * Your suspicions that we should in some way be involved with illegal business practice is ridiculous. I went through the list and saw that on all accounts they include some kind of conspiracy. There is none. We have the right to act out of self-interest just as much as anyone else.

    * Finally. The US customers are not getting screwed. They have to pay the same as the Europeans. 30 euros is $40.78. The 5 euros for shipping comes nowhere close to cover the 13-14 pounds it cost to ship the book to the US.

    So we return to the same old situation. If you want to buy at a discount and not the real price, you have to wait. If Amazon, Overstock and all these other websites would deal with us directly, you could buy the books there quicker. But to deal with many thousands of publishers would be too costly for them, so they require us to go through middlemen to make it easier for them.

    So, summa summarum. If you don’t think it is worth the money, don’t buy it.

  29. I’m sorry, I didn’t realize we were living in the 1950’s when “screwed” was a considered a dirty word.

    You think $40.78 BEFORE shipping for one of your books is reasonable? Have you seen Everyman’s prices? You know would probably make more money on these books if you priced them normally and sold more volume instead of trying this war with on-line retailers and whatever moneymaking sceme involving boats and warehouses in Poland with teams of ice sledding dogs carrying packages of books.

  30. @Michael LaRue
    I think $40.78 before shipping for a book like GM2 is well worth the money. I do computer programming and a book like “Effective C++ Third Edition” is $49.99 before shipping. Soft cover 297 pages, published by Addison Wesley. Arguably, the market for computer programming books is equivalent in numbers if not bigger than the chess books market.

    Publishers are under tremendous cost pressures these days. So, I prefer to order direct from the website to help a publisher of quality books stay in business.
    An extra $10.00 is a small price to pay.

  31. A lot of the recent discussion leaves me scratching my head.

    First, the cost is the cost. There is no such thing as too high per se. If we don’t think there is value for the money, we won’t buy. If enough people do this, the company corrects its pricing or it dies. If people feel they are getting value … this is what determines what is “reasonable” and the company continues.

    I don’t see the point of comparing Everyman to Quality. They clearly have different mission statements. It’s as pointless as complaining about the prices from McFarland. They are proud of their product and have priced it at a level that allows them to continue. If people find it too dear, they aren’t obligated to buy.

    Complaining that you can’t find it dirt cheap on amazon is not a business case argument. As a very (very!) minor player in publishing, I don’t like dealing with amazon either.

    Sorry for the length of this comment, but as a final remark, I think it’s very commendable that messrs. Aagaard and Shaw communicate to their clients like this. You won’t see the like from Everyman.

  32. Have I seen Everyman’s prices? Yes I have. The real question is, have you seen their books? Otherwise the other gentlemen is straight on the money.

  33. A blog like this attracts people who want to be important
    by complaining about god and the world and everything.
    The are experts in every field, they even know the correct
    prices for books although they’ve never published one.
    We shouldn’t take them too seriously.
    It’s obvious that Jacob and John don’t have become millionaires
    by producing 400-page books about, for example, the Catalan.

  34. Guys, I would like to mention the fact that there is a big diiference between the targeted market between QC and others. I am not an employee of any of these publishers and do not defend any of them. But come on… Everyman and Gambit are more oriented to beginners to intermediate level and QC is oriented to advanced players (at least with GM Repertoire series). So the higher the level is the higher they must pay to the authors and of course the book price is higher. In addition if we compare the quality of paper, binding… there is a big difference. Just an example – simply compare Starting Out: Classical Sicilian with, for example, Experts vs Sicilian… And u will see the difference in quality, not content related, but binding and producing related. And this is for about 5 EUR… Why not, I would prefer to get better quality binded book instead of newspaper-like book. This is one of the reasons why I asked QC whether they plan to publish hard cover editions. And I already pre-ordered all available hard covers from this site. So every piece of work has its own price as we have also our own price for the work we do.
    And about preordering for a lower price…I simply stopped to use sites like Amazon almost 2 years ago… Yes, cheaper price but very very slow service, so when one receives the book, it is already outdated. And this is for all books, not only chess related. So my personal opinion is that it is worth paying 5-10 EUR more but get what u want as soon as it is published instead of saving that amount and get the books in 2-3 months.
    Everything in this world has its own price and everyone must pay it.

  35. Chess Book Lover

    I think it’s safe to say that Quality Chess targets a smaller market segment and offers a better product to a higher price than their competitors. I doubt that this is a good strategy from a business perspective but QC deserve to be praised for their efforts – not criticized.

    There is still room for improvements in QC’s editing and typesetting process (I can say this as a professional editor). However, I am not sure how many customers would want to pay for this improvement.

  36. Obviously there is always room for improvement. However, if we spent three times as much time on editing, the material would start to go out of date.

    About the business perspective. If you have a profitable business that play to your strengths, it does not make sense to seek to immitate others who are doing differently. This is our philosophy, and why we try to stay with what we are best at.

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