210 thoughts on “Excerpts of new books”

  1. No coverage of 1. d4 f5 2. g4!? In the Stonewall dutch?

    Also, I would be interested why the move order with 1. … e6 is pre-dominant in the book. Is there a specific reason to avoid certain lines but allow transposition to the French? The chapter on 1.d4 f5 seems long enough with about 35 pages after all.

  2. 1.d4 f5 2.g4 is mentioned, but as a note rather than a main variation.

    Sedlak discusses move orders in the book but the gist of it is as follows. If Black is happy with a French (as Sedlak himself clearly is), then the 1.d4 e6 move order offers a more convenient way of reaching the Stonewall, as it rules out all kinds of options which White might try after 1.d4 f5. The Stonewall (not to mention Classical) Dutch and French often go hand in hand for this reason. So he gives 1.d4 e6 2.c4 f5 as the primary move order, but then also provides a repertoire against the various 1.d4 f5 possibilities, for the benefit of readers who do not wish to allow a French.

  3. @Andrew Greet
    Thanks! Makes perfect sense!
    I think I might get the book as my recent tries with a Nimzo/Ragozin led to too many dull positions. And having QC offer a new book on the Stonewall increases my confidence in its soundness.

  4. @Tobias
    You’re welcome. I’m sure you won’t be disappointed in the event that you buy the book. Nikola really knows his stuff and both he and I (as the editor) invested a lot of effort into making it the best it could be.

  5. Looks great indeed! I myself also play 1.d4 e6 (and French against 1.e4), so this is very convenient to me. Against 2.c4 I play 2…Bb4+, which is also quite interesting imo. And against 2.Nf3 or 2.g3 you can play a Stonewall Dutch.

  6. @Andrew Greet
    Is it possible that the game with Predojevic is what led the author to switch to the move order that appears in the book? Also does he offer analysis of this game in B5 2).e4!? page 267?

  7. The book does not mention a Predojevic-Sedlak game under 1.d4 f5 2.e4, but I’ve just looked it up. (For the benefit of anyone else who wants to do so, you may find it helpful to know that 2.Nc3 Nf6 3.e4 fxe4 was the actual move order.) Nikola gives a more accurate sequence for Black in the book, following a correspondence game where Black kept the extra pawn for insufficient compensation.

  8. I understand that Gawain Jones is writing a full repertoire with 1 e4. Any details yet? Page count or number of volumes etc?

  9. A Super Talent

    @Andrew Greet
    Andrew, I have a few questions. Please answer if possible.
    1. Let us say I am trying to expand my repertoire from exclusively playing Kings Indian and Benoni
    positions. Would you suggest the Leningrad Dutch or the Stonewall? I am referring to Marin’s upcoming work on the same and Sedlak’s books for this study. Stylistically, which book will suit which player? It would be nice to hear this.
    Also, an additional point to understand here is that 1.d4 e6 is not a very good move order against the London System, as White ducks the critical Bf5 c5 systems from Black’s end. Any suggestions from Sedlak on countering this move order?
    2. In Think like a Machine, the authors mention that they only analysed positions upto depth 30. However as a correspondence player I have often noticed that depth 30 is virtually useless in many positions. The authors humbly admit the same, and I respect them for it, but won’t such a decision compromise the quality of the book?
    3. How will Gawain’s series compare with Negi’s works and Shaw’s works? Will there be another Open Sicilian recommendation from him?
    Thanks and Stay safe!

  10. @A Super Talent
    1) Only you can make that decision. You might find that the Leningrad make for a more natural transition as you still have a bishop on g7; on the other hand, if the idea is to branch out into a different type of game then you might find the Leningrad too similar in character to the KID/Benoni. So it depends what your priorities are.

    2) I have had no personal involvement in this book, so I can’t give a detailed answer, but it’s safe to assume that a depth of around 30 will be plenty for most of their examples. Take the Shirov game in the excerpt for instance: you may get a different evaluation at depth 30/40/50 or whatever, but the important point is the instructive value of the amazing move found by the machine.

    3) I’ve had no contact with Gawain and it’s much too early to go into details anyway, but he’s obviously a superb player and I’m sure his work will be great. Further details will follow when the time comes.

  11. I don’t think Jones would recommend Open Sicilians as he rarely plays them. I’d guess he’d go for Moscow/Rossilimo lunes like his Everyman book a number of years back!

  12. A Super Talent

    @Andrew Greet
    Thanks a lot for your detailed explanations. Your answers make a lot of sense and I will consider all this before buying. With regards to depth 30, yes maybe like you said if you have an idea of showing the machines line as a case of inspiring play, maybe it is enough, but it is common knowledge that Stockfishs depth 30 is not quite enough for the objective truth. But I will rest until I get the book and check it for myself. Any plans on writing a book called play like a machine?

  13. Jacob Aagaard

    Regarding depth 30. I worked a lot on that book and checked all the positions personally and with the help of Sam solving them. Some things were added, some positions fell at the wayside. No book is without mistakes, but certainly you will not get the feeling that the chess in this book is superficial.

  14. Please try and get Sedlak to do a book on the London System! A Quality Chess book on the London System would sell so well!

  15. Is there any hooe that someday a GM Repertoire with non g3 Mainline will be released? Like QGd Main Lines with Bg5 or Bf4, Bayonet or Mar del Plata vs KID, Bc4 Exchange vs Grünfeld and so on…

  16. mstoe :
    Is there any hooe that someday a GM Repertoire with non g3 Mainline will be released? Like QGd Main Lines with Bg5 or Bf4, Bayonet or Mar del Plata vs KID, Bc4 Exchange vs Grünfeld and so on…

    Forgot to add 1.d4 ^^

  17. I know Sedlak doesn’t like the London against the King’s Indian. Even if Sedlak only covered the London vs. 1…d5, that would be great. I think playing 1.d4 d5 2.Bf4 is a good option for players who play 1.d4 Nf6 2.Bg5 as White and don’t want to play 1.d4 d5 2.Bg5.

  18. Sedlak already wrote two books on the London. I know it’s already a few years ago, but on the other hand I don’t think the theory of the London is developing with the speed of light. So what’s the point of him repeating his earlier work, but now for QC instead of Chess Evolution? Well, there’s the hardcover aspect of course.

  19. @Ray

    I have both of Sedlak’s books from Chess Evolution and I think you may be surprised just how much, not only the theory but also the general approach to playing this opening (particularly under the Carslen influence) has changed in the last couple of years.

  20. In “Schach” July 2020 B. Adhiban mentiones he is working on a book for Quality Chess. Can you revale the topic of this book?

  21. @Hesse_Bub

    @Jacob Aagaard

    As Jacob said, Adhiban is not a Quality Chess author (sadly), but I think I can guess what the story is about. One of our QC authors is working on a book that features Adhiban in one chapter as a model player to follow. I could imagine Adhiban was very helpful in answering our author’s questions, so yes, he would have been working on a book for QC.

    I will give the full details about the book in a proper post when I have details and a cover.

  22. Really looking forward to the Gelfand books but a bit disappointed that they’ll only be in hardcover. Pretty curious as to how you decide which get both hard and paperbacks on the same day and which ones get paperbacks a few months later?

  23. It’s no secret: our default position is to publish in hardcover initially, with paperback following some months later, as is the norm in the wider publishing industry. We make an exception for opening books, as we recognise that opening theory is more time-sensitive and so it makes sense to make such books available in both formats as early as possible.

  24. George Hollands

    The hardbacks are easily worth twice the extra price that QC charge above the paperback editions.

    It might just be my OCD when it comes to my chess library but the fact I have some paperback versions from back before they did hardbacks or before I realised how much better they are – really irks me.

    They’ve released some books over the last couple of years only in PB, which I presume is for commercial reasons. I would normally have purchased the book, I tend to buy everything QC release – but the lack of HB option meant I couldn’t bring myself to.

  25. I get that some books are far more suited to being a hardback. Practical Chess Beauty or The Anand Files or The Nemesis are good examples but I’m pretty sure the first two Gelfand books were out in paperback on their initial release. Also having to wait 8 months for Small Steps 2 has been rough. Almost there though…

  26. You can check the hardcover/paperback situation with the earlier Gelfand books on our site, but I’ll save you the trouble by copying from the “Positional Decision Making” page:
    Hardcover published 17 June 2015
    Paperback published 3 February 2016

    As you can see, we are consistent in publishing in hardcover first, except opening books for the reason stated previously.

  27. @Andrew Greet
    The slightly irritating position when hardback only is you charge a higher price on Forward Chess until the paperback comes out, when the price goes down. With a paperback release the lower price is charged from day one.
    Of course, it’s your company and you can do what you wish, and realise this also happens in the wider publishing business with kindle releases -though there you never see paperback and hardback released concurrently. But still a bit irritating.

  28. @Paul H

    Our general rule on Forward Chess pricing is that the FC version should be about 2/3 the price of the paper version (because it’s less expensive to ‘print’ ebooks than paper books).

    So when the paper version is slightly more expensive than normal (as it is with hardcovers) it makes sense to me that the FC version is also slightly more expensive. But I have no doubt different views are also reasonable.

  29. Franck steenbekkers

    When will the petrovbook at forward chess?
    Is there more info about the 1 e4 books of Jones

  30. Just a minor complaint about the forward chess version.

    I bought the Stonewall Dutch thinking I could use it on my laptop while travelling since there was an app for MacOS. But unfortunately, unlike for mobile devices it seems I cannot use the book offline (kind of strange that offline usage is ok for mobile devices but not for laptops.)

    You could make that a bit clearer on your forward chess page: you list Iphones and ipads and foreward chess offers an app for MacOS. I contacted forward chess and they said it it a restriction imposed by publishers, That is your right of course but at least state that constraint a bit more clearly on your page linking to forward chess.

    – a disgruntled customer

  31. @Till

    Another good reason why the printed product is so much better than buying online only products….if you have the book in your hands you can read it anywhere!!

  32. @Till

    The issue is not whether it is a laptop, but, rather, the operating system. For mobile apps (Android and iOS), the books are downloadable.

    For (what FC call) desktop versions – Windows and MacOS, one needs to have internet access and the files are not downloadable.

    So, you can read books on your mobiles devices ‘on the go’ (offline, airplane, etc.), but the desktop version requires internet access. The restriction is of course about security concerns.

    We will look at re-writing our FC page to make it clearer. Currently it says:

    “We are offering some of our books in digital format which allows you to read, and play through (!), our books on your mobile device. It can be used with (iPhone, Android, iPad).”

    That’s all true, but some added info about operating systems might help.

  33. A simple “Offline reading is only supported for: … but *not* for …” would have been enough.

    – I believe offline access is a deal breaker for many customers.
    – Nowhere (neither here nor at Forward chess) is it made clear that the OS you are using is the key to what functionality you get. (After my complaint Forward chess told me they would update their FAQ.)

    “That’s all true, but some added info about operating systems might help.”
    some added info about operating systems affecting available functionality is essential.

    – still disgruntled.

  34. A comment about the Stonewall book. Obviously it’s excellent in the most part after studying it since getting it a few days ago.

    However I’m surprised that there is no mention of how to deal with Cummings aggressive attacking scheme in Opening Repertoire the English. You’d think that writing a Black repertoire book you’d examine in particular the lines given in recent White repertoire books?

    Or maybe I’m missing something.

  35. I hope this comment does not come across as hostile, I do not mean it as such. I just like to be straightforward when it comes to technical maters. From a technical perspective there is no difference in the risk of allowing offline downloads on Android as compared to allowing them on Windows. Netflix allows offline downloads of movies on Windows that cost hundreds of millions of dollars to make. I understand the concern about piracy, but I do think it is important to note that it is not a valid reason to prevent offline downloads on Windows. Forward Chess may not have invested the resources in updating their desktop app to take advantage of the DRM features that Windows offers and that is totally fine. But it’s not a technical limitation, it is a choice of where you invest your resources.

  36. Forward Chess

    Tim, your comment did not sound hostile at all! We would be happy to have a technical discussion about this, though perhaps offline/in a different forum.

    In addition to what we *could* do technically, there are also other considerations. As you probably know, Forward Chess started as an app for mobile devices, Android and iOS only. When we suggested expanding the list to other operating systems, several of our participating publishers got really concerned. It wasn’t practical to have some rules for one group and another set of rules for the rest. What resulted is a compromise. We have a “desktop version”, for Windows and MacOS, but the books are only accessible online. For other systems, like Kindle Fire, we do not offer any options, as a part of that compromise. Frankly, the choice was this or no Windows access. Do you think we made the wrong choice?

    We would love to hear your thoughts (technical or otherwise) on the subject. Please email us info At forwardchess.com

  37. @Forward Chess

    Those other considerations make a ton of sense to me. I actually did not know Forward Chess started as mobile device only. Based on those constraints imposed by some publishers I think your decision makes a ton of sense! I appreciate you being willing to go into detail.

    Anti-piracy on the desktop is a tough environment. So while folks like Netflix do allow offline content on Windows, they do not on Mac desktop. I would definitely hope some publishers would reconsider the restriction on Windows, but given how many publishers you work with it makes sense you want one set of rules for everything.

    Big fan of the app by the way, I own 10+ books through it!

  38. @Tim,@ForwardChess

    I did not complain about the restrictions for certain environments or your reasons for these restrictions, to be honest I could not care less. If you sell something you can put any restrictions you like on it. If you tell me what restrictions exist I can decide whether or not these restrictions matter to me.

    But *not* telling me these restrictions is what I complained and are still annoyed about.

  39. I think you really need to rethink the design of the hardbacks. The big difference in size between the page and the cover makes the corners very susceptible to denting in shipping. Got a package today from my chess shop of these 3 releases in hardback – all four corners of all 3 books badly damaged. Now the hassle of returning. Next time I think I buy in person where I can personally choose.

  40. @The Doctor

    There was a thread on here many years ago how they were frequently getting damaged in the mail. I got some at the time which were slightly damaged, but not to the extent of yesterday and let it pass, but started to buy in person. Of course today, mail is more likely the buying option.

    But I will not buy any more QC hardbacks mail order.

  41. I always buy hardbacks via mail from my preferred chess shop and like The Doctor never had any problems. The shop is always using very stable packages.

  42. @Tom Tidom
    Here is the discussion from 2015. So it is not an isolated issue, nor a recent one. I had no issue with the packaging. The weakness lies in the mail system (I assume it fell off the conveyor belt at the sorting centre or was thrown into a van somewhere) and the design (eg other books with firmer cover and less overlap vs the inside pages on my shelves have never been damaged. ).

    Obviously this is a first world problem but nevertheless frustrating.


  43. I have the same problem, alas too often. Corners and bottom/top side of the hardbacks are getting damaged when being shipped by QC via UPS. It is a real pity. I like the hardbacks and I’m willing to pay the extra for it, provided they are in good condition. (Once in a while they are in (near) perfect condition; and then it is a total joy).

  44. @Daniel
    I dont know if it is coincidence but I think a lot of his repertoire, at least with white, echoes that of Rublevsky, whose games he used frequently in his book on Bb5. I think his opening books tend to also be on openings he has played frequently, with a view to being practical. So, my guess would be

    Bb5 against Sicilian. 2 knights against French and Caro Kann. Italian against e5. ( I dont know how frequently jones plays these though

  45. Benjamin Fitch

    I do think it’s all about the packaging. There are effective and ineffective ways to protect hardcover books (regardless of the publisher) during shipping. They should be in a box, they shouldn’t move around within the box, etc.

  46. @Benjamin Fitch
    I think the packaging was fine- wrapped tightly in bubble wrap and then cardboard so could not move. In my view when shipping a book you need 2 of 3 things- postal service not to toss around, well packed and sound construct/physical design of the book. In my view there was only one of these, with the first and third elements lacking.

  47. Hi all
    Playing the Petroff arrived today. First impressions good but heart sunk a little when your proposed line leads to the possibility of white forcing a perpetual at move 6 ?
    Could live with the main line leading to an equal endgame at move 20 but without a follow up line if in must win situation or opponent much lower rated who might take an easy draw is a bit disappointing. Even a slightly dodgy line would be a good alternative but surely there’s something else at move 5? A wee addendum maybe?

  48. I’m currently reading through Sedlak’s book on the Stonewall. I really like it so far – looks like a great repertoire. What I also like is that the page count is relatively limited :-). It would be very nice if Sedlak would write a companion book on his French repertoire!

  49. Franck steenbekkers :
    When Will the excerpts of the august books be published

    We all know, that they will be published when they are ready…:-) So let me re-phrase the question: Are you on track for the publication date of August 12th for the Italian books? Very much looking forward to these.

  50. @Ray
    I also like Sedlak’s Stonewall book very much. Him writing a book about the French would be the only possibility that a might try it sometimes, although it would be a very, very slim chance.

    I also wouldn’t mind a QC London book by Sedlak, with all the new developments since his previous books. He explains very well and is very thorough and also has a writing style which I like.

  51. I get my QC hardbacks from Chess Direct and they’re wrapped really well and have never had any issues!!

  52. Are there any plans to have Opening Simulator KID on Chessable?
    Seems a great platform for this book.

  53. Received the new Stonewall repertoire book by Sedlak.

    One logical variation that is missing in chapter 1 is C4) 4.Bg5!?

    Otherwise it looks like a very interesting read to me!

  54. Hi again
    I never got a reply to comment #64 above. Not sure if was ignored or missed. Personally if I buy a repertoire book I want to play it at club level and not worry about having to do my own research to avoid a lower rated or lazy player taking a perpetual at move 6 … surely this is the author’s and editor’s job. Other publishers often provide a choice…the solid option and the riskier if you want a game rather than a theory battle. Maybe other contributors could chip in and indicate whether they want books that do have this option or is it just me? Do QC not do this in the Petroff book on purpose or was it an omission? Would appreciate a reply . Thanks ?

  55. Benjamin Fitch

    Personally, I don’t mind this (opportunities for White to force a draw) in a book for Black on the Petroff, for two reasons. Secondarily, the Petroff doesn’t spring to mind as a “must win with Black” choice (I’d go with the Caro-Kann, especially after Lars Schandorff’s new book comes out, or with the Alekhine—but only until Negi’s book comes out). More importantly, for every half point that Black occasionally drops because of these White opportunities to force a draw, there will likely be a couple of full points that Black gains because White is playing for a win and feels frustrated (to the point of making a mistake) by Black’s choice (and fine handling) of the Petroff.

  56. This draw in the Petroff always existed, it’s just part of the opening. Whenever you play the Petroff you must agree to it, and have another opening in store whan you want to deprive White of this possibility. Or just allow the draw, it’s no big deal after all.

  57. @ JB
    Elements of answer :
    1/ 100% OK with the answers above.

    2/ It’s QUALITY chess. They usually go deep, go sound but they don’t go wide. Space, time, energy are limited. It’s their choice, I understand it even if it doesn’t always match very well with my approach of openings at my amateur level.

    3/ Alternatives to this drawish variation are considered inferior. Petroff’s specialists here might confirm?

    4/ Who follows more than 50% of a repertoire book anyway? I make my repertoire from many sources and a bit of personal work.
    By the way, Cohen’s book covers Murey’s fantastic 4Nc6. I would play the Petroff just to put this move on the board whatever it’s soundness! Cohen admits it’s not equal but this might be a practical line for you when you play for a win, if you stick to the Petroff in such occasions.

  58. @JB
    I saw the comment but didn’t reply due to a combination of being busy finishing Negi and not having a photographic memory to know which line you were talking about. If you could give either the moves or the page number, I’ll take a look and give my thoughts on it.

  59. @Thomas
    I’m not saying that the Petroff is anything but equal but equal is very different from a forced draw at move 6 if my opponent wants it. Let’s face it, John Jacob and Andrew wouldn’t risk playing their own company’s repertoire against me if we met in a Scottish league match whereas if they followed say Cohen’s Petroff repertoire they do have an alternative opt out to keep the game going and grind me down for a win. A proper repertoire book should have this in my opinion. For instance the recent Zaitsev book gave an alternative to avoid the Ng5 Rf8 Nf3 repetition. At least some awareness that this is possible by your opponent before you buy would be good.

  60. @Cowe
    It exists true but you don’t have to allow it. Cohen’s Petrff book is explicitly aggressive and avoids forced draws so to avoid the 3 d4 Nxe4 4 Bd3 d5 5 Nxe5 Nd7 6 Nxf7 draw I am talking about he gives alternatives…in fact you have alternatives after move 3, e.g. exd4 move 4 e.g. Mureys crazy Nc6!? and move 5 e.g…. Bd6 gives you plenty of options even if you think 5…Nd7 is objectively the strongest line. Id expect a repertoire book to give me this flexibility

  61. Thanks Middlewave for the answer.

    Ideally, of course it would be nice if our repertoire equalized everywhere without giving the opponent a chance to force a draw like this, but now and again such things can happen. I get that there is an argument for including a back-up line in the book; on the other hand, we are talking about the bulletproof Petroff. If the book was, say, “Playing The Sicilian Dragon – A Swashbuckling Repertoire”, I would see it as more of a problem.

    Anyway, the book is the way it is, so I suggest one of the following approaches:
    a) When a quick draw is unacceptable (whether due to the opponent being much weaker, or needing to win in the last round of a tournament for example), I imagine a lot of players would opt for a more combative opening than the Petroff anyway, even if this 6.Nxf7 line didn’t exist.
    b) Just do a bit of your own research to find a back-up Petroff line to use on such occasions.

  62. Did I see Negi 5 was nearing completion?

    It will be nice to see what he recommends against the 3..Qd6 Scandinavian. I am hoping for 4 d4 Nf6 5 Nf3 c6 6 g3 Bf5 7 Bf4 as in Solomon-Kasparov,S 2016 to be explored by the author.

    It will also be interesting to see his recommendations against 2..Nf6 3 d4 Bg4 (if 3 d4 is the approach taken).

  63. @Andrew Greet
    Thanks Andrew for replying.Guess we get to differ about who’s job it should be to do the back up Petroff line as the Cohen book (who did do the small amount of extra work of one Chapter in a total of 28 chapters) is 7 years old now and it would be good to have a state of play on the alternatives from the experts…that’s why we pay you to do the necessary legwork in the cover price. I’d more happily play the repertoire then and stop and make a decision based on my knowledge of my opponent once they play 3.d4 rather than 3. Nxe5 whether to risk a forced draw or avoid it using the back up line. Last year I had an opponent who offered a draw early on as he told me he wanted to watch the Champion’s league in the bar next door…thankfully there was no forced repetition on the board at the time. It would also be good to know exactly why Dhopade rates 5…Nd7 over Bd6 too…where is the issue ? And is Murey refuted now in the days of Leela? Or does the 3…exd4 endgame line hold? At the moment I’d only play the given repertoire if my opponent was higher rated or a draw suited my team captain which is a bit sad.

  64. There are also many perpetuals in the Modern Main Line, so for a well prepared white player satisfied with a draw that is always an option. The only difference is that after 6 moves instead of 20 book moves you can go to the bar early 🙂 . By the way, this is certainly not an exclusive problem for the ‘bulletproof’ Petroff. E.g., in the less bullet-proof Pirc book by Marin het also allows an early and well-known draw by repetition in the Austrian Attack. I think if you have a must-win situation you just should avoid these lines and play indeed something like the Alekhine, Modern Defence or even the Nimzowitsch Defence. But usually white will also want to play a game of chess presumably, so what are the odds really of this 6-move draw actually happening?

  65. 5…Bd6 is a serious move and there may or may not be an ‘issue’ with it. Authors may or may not explain why they chose one line over another. In this case, Dhopade simply stated which one he preferred and analysed it really well, which is good enough for me.

    In a must-win game, Murey’s 4…Nc6 would seem like a good choice. It’s safe to say White can claim an edge with precise play; but I can’t imagine that the calibre of player who you would hate to draw against would be the type who would know the most precise way for White to play – and even if they did, you could still get a game and try to outplay them.
    I suppose our book could have been slightly improved with the inclusion of this or another back-up line. But since that ship has sailed and you already have the Cohen book, I would just use Cohen’s analysis to learn the basics of the Murey line, and check with a decent engine to make sure Cohen hasn’t overlooked anything horrible.

    Finally, I’m not sure if you just really hate quick draws or if you were slightly overstating things to argue your point – but when saying you would only play 6…Nd7 against higher-rated opponents, I think you overestimate the odds of this drawing line appearing on the board. Why would an evenly matched or even slightly lower-rated opponent just force a draw with the white pieces after six moves?

  66. @JB: Black plays the Petrov when he’s ok with a draw, so the repetition is no problem and against 3.d4, the solid …Nd7 is often preferred to the riskier …Bd6. As for Murey’s 1.e4 e5 2.Nf3 Nf6 3.d4 Nxe4 5.Bd3 Nc6, it may confuse some opponents but on top of the mainlines, you must be aware that the simple 6.Nxe5 gives White an easy life. In Paris we spent some time with the man himself on this move, and the result was: either Black goes for dubious tactics or he finds himself at the defending side of a drawish ending (which iwas fine for Black). My 2c: if you like the Petrov, keep it bulletproof and know when to play it.

  67. And my own two cents about this problem: it is very rare to find a White player who will play this whole system nowadays AND be booked up against 5…Bd6 AND this to occur in a situation where you really need to avoid a quick draw at all costs AND White actually intending to play 6.Nxf7 after 5…Nd7.
    Not to mention, an in-depth look into 5…Bd6 may have serious practical advantages anyway, as the line is more or less forgotten nowadays, and quite complex.

  68. @Cowe

    “Black plays the Petrov when he’s ok with a draw”? That’s not true. In amateur level, lot of players play the Petrov because this opening suit their style and they want to win!
    Did you ever listen to interviews of Karpov? He explained once that he also played the Petrov to win with black.

    In sharp Najdorf lines you have a lot of lines, where Black has to accepte the draw after 20-30 moves. But you won’t say: Black plays the Najdorf for a draw.

    It’s a question of your style. For the most players the Petrov brings boring symmetrical positions, but for Karpov and some other players, these positions are quite interesting and you can outplay your oppenents.

  69. I would prefer the following statement:
    “If you are playing with Black and you try to play “correct”, sometimes you have to accept the draw.”

  70. Thanks everyone for your honest feedback. I’m maybe getting paranoid as I’ve had 2 early repetitions from white in consecutive seasons. I’m still not sure how best to avoid one of them and it’s not having an idea in your head about how to handle this that got me irked. I agree the chances are low as most people play Nxe5 or Nc3

  71. Since QC has started to publish classics: Do you plan to publish any book by Polugaevsky? These books are currently published by Ischi press. Somehow I dont like their layout.

    Polugaevskys is one of my idols and I like his approach to chess.

  72. @Bebbe
    ‘Started’? If I remember correctly their very first book was a classic (Questions of Chess Theory)! (It was even one of the reasons for starting Quality Chess). That being said there are some gems out there deserving a proper reprint :-). For example, Kasparov’s ‘The test of time’ would also be nice! It’s been long out of print. Other books which come to mind: ‘Simple chess’ by Michael Stean (though still in print by Dover) or some thus far untranslated Russian treasures.

  73. I noticed an omission is Sedlak’s fine book: after 1.d4 e6 2.g3 f5 3.Bg2 Nf6 4.Nf3 d5 5.0-0 c6 6.c4 Bd6 7.Nbd2 0-0 8.Ne5 b6 9.Ndf3 Ne4 10.h4!? Bb7, he does not mention the logical move and first choice of Stockfish, i.e. 11.Bf4 (the move 10.h4!? was designed to enable). Sielecki recommends this move in ‘Keep it simple: 1.e4’, and I would have expected that recommendations in recent repertoire books for the white side should be covered as a matter of principle – therefore i.m.o. it’s a serious omission in a critical line. Sielecki’s line continues 11…Nd7 12.Rc1 c5 13.Ng5! Nxg5 14.Bxg5 Qe8 15.Nxd7 Qxd7 16.cxd5 Bxd5 17.dxc5 Bxc5 18.Bxd5 exd5 19.Qb3. According to Sielecki, ‘Black is suffering with mutiple weaknesses to attend. Het can’t play …f5-f7, which would help’. I have tried to find an improvement with the help of Stockfish, but didn’t succeed so far. This line doesn’t seem like much fun for black as I don’t see counterplay. And it’s quite easy to learn for white (hence ‘Keep it simple’). Do you have any thoughts / suggestions on this? And on a more general note, I wonder what QC’s policy is on covering recent recommendations for the other side in recent repertoire books? Do you agree that these should be dealt with?

  74. Of course we strive to give recommendations against repertoire books written from the opposite side’s perspective – as evidenced by the list of 1.d4 books in the bibliography and the references made to them in the text. We are only human though, and occasionally we miss something. In this instance, I was editing the book from home during lockdown; I made a trip into the office to pick up a bundle of 1.d4 books, each one of which are referred to in the text – but we didn’t have this particular title on the shelf, and I must confess I wasn’t aware of it.

    Someone else mentioned a recommendation from the Cummings 1.c4 book a while ago. This one we do have on the shelf, but it was just a psychological blind spot: I checked all the 1.d4 repertoire books but forgot to check 1.c4 followed by d4.

    I’ll have a look at both of those missing lines at some point, but for now I have more pressing concerns, such as ensuring that the Negi and Gelfand books get sent away for printing on schedule.

    Oh and the Elephant is next in line for editing, for those who are wondering about that.

  75. Good evening Andrew,

    I can see that Avrukh has an estimated publication date of September per the coming soon section. Are you hoping to publish Negi 5 with the Avrukh books, that is in the same batch of books published.

    Thank you very much.


  76. @Andrew Greet
    I’m hoping that you’ll be updating Negi to take into account the recommendations in the Elephant Gambit book. I’m sure that all his analysis will be trampled into the dirt by the upcoming work.

  77. James – Yes, we are currently proofreading Negi and 2x Gelfand with a view to printing/publishng them simultaneously.

    Bill – We are fortunate that Negi’s 1.e4 e5 volume will come some time after the Elephant, so that he will have the option of switching to 2.Nc3 or 2.Bc4 to avoid being refuted.

  78. @Andrew
    I have a question, and it’s a serious one at that, not a joke: is there really an Elephant Gambit book in the works?! Or is it some kind of chat insider joke that I missed due to my infrequent visits?
    Asking seriously, and no offense to the Elephant fans!

  79. Will the EEG also include a chapter or two on playing the reversed gambit with White, so I can focus my limited study time on things other than opening play? I think the Elephant Stampede Attack has a nice ring to it.

  80. I’m pretty sure there is no chapter on the Elephant reversed. The trouble is that you really need the knight on f3/f6 to serve as a target for the advancing e-pawn, so something like 2.Nf3 Nc6 3.d4 exd4 4.Bd3 would not make a great deal of sense. However, if you face the Petroff then 3.d4 should lead to an Elephant with an extra tempo, so that could be an option.

  81. Since 3. Nxe5 Nc6 has now been proven online to be more correct than the Marshall and Najdorf combined, maybe 3. d4 in the mainline Petroff should be renamed the Anti-Stafford Gambit.
    Cowe’s line has the merit of being slightly more aggressive than the London, for sure. Much food for thought, here.

  82. @Bill: Well, even in bullet it is not very likely to surprise somebody with 3….Nc6. The refutation – given for example in the Shaw-Book – 4.Nxc6 dxc6 5.d4 you can find on the fly. Against the Marshall White is unable to get a winning postion almost by force after a few moves.

  83. @TD

    few comments on that book and his review.

    The title is provocative but also a reference to Kotov’s legendary think like a GM.
    Whay can we learn from chess engine ? probably not much ( if not a all) . It just make clear that calculation power is more important than anything else. …but as human we can not consider all legal moves as candidates moves.

  84. Before arriving at a handful of candidate moves, though, I believe that we can and should consider every legal move available in the current position, if only for one brief second (in many cases). This is a best practice or matter of discipline (not counting speed chess). Also, just before making a move, I believe that to maximize results it’s essential to literally consider (if only for one brief moment) every single legal reply. Considering (that is, nonverbally seeing in the mind) every legal move one level deep for both sides not only prevents some mistakes but occasionally reveals possibilities that we wouldn’t have otherwise considered.

  85. I do not own the book but I have read the excerpt, in particular the example in Shankland`s foreword I found quite jaw-dropping. 1.a2-a4 is a natural candidate as it is a lever, provides “Luft” for the king and there might be tactics against the enemy king. An easy catch for the lazy reader and it even was played in the game. But playing a2-a4 intending to cover b5 where mate is delivered eleven moves “down the line (Shankland`s words) ??? Weird coincidence is Brabo`s own example, where an amazing 1.h2-h4 is the computer-solution… watch out for pawn moves at the edge. Crazy stuff and certainly utmost difficult to solve.

  86. Don’t have the book either but seems to be on the same lines as Invisible Chess Moves that even experiencing crazily complex motives might be enough to trigger some awareness of similar difficult tactics in the future. Personally feel all the engine advancements need a human translator like Sadler and Regan did in Game Changer which has filtered down to club players like myself that we can utilise. e.g. Pushing Harry the h pawn may be a good strategic plan in lots of other positions than just the najdorf and dragon. Similarly Nunn helped distill all the tablebase data into useful ideas e.g. Defending king running away to the far away corner in queen vs queen and pawn endgames. Just saying that ‘ you need to think more like a machine’ doesn’t take you any further. Be interested if Manella and Zohar provide some explanations when I finally get to read it

  87. With chess engines now dominating over players – even top players, it will be nice see some publication showing what human can learn from engines. So far , i dont see any.

  88. I would also like to see books with analysis between engine games.
    I guess Sadler’s book is one example.
    But it will be interesting to see in one book, all (or at least many) of teh analysis that we can
    read in some chess sites. By the way, interesting analysis in most of the cases

    RYV: Perhaps the book “Thinking like a Machine” is more in tune with what you want.
    I have seen some controversy on that book which pointed to a negative review. It was precisely
    that negative review that motivated me to order the book. What may be negative for some, might be positive for others 🙂

  89. @RYV

    All writers use engines to check the lines they propose. I think there are enough books about how engines think at the moment, because we are not engines and it is better to have a human approach using engines.

  90. Too many QC books, too little time! Looking at Dhopades Petroff book again via the Bishops Opening, as well as the typo on p302 about the non existent variation C of Chapter 1, there is no mention of the path to follow if white tries the Urusov gambit after 3 d4. Of course…exd4 Nf3 allows a transposition to the scotch gambit/ 2 knights after Nc6 but does Swapnil advocate this? If not and he takes the gamut pawn on e4 surely he should give us the best way of defending White’s attack especially as it gets very hairy in some of the lines with ipins everywhere eg after Qxd4 Bg5 Be7 Nc3 h6 Qh4 . As Swapnil chooses 3…Nxe4 rather than …exd4 against the main line 3 d4 Petroff it falls outside his repertoire but can’t see anything better than 3….exd4 against the Bishops move order

  91. @JB
    Yes, this was an oversight which should really have been spotted. Assuming you don’t wish to accept the Urusov Gambit, which can indeed be quite tricky, I have two possible solutions:
    – Anyone already familiar with the Two Knights Defence can play 4…Nc6 and be happy.
    – Alternatively, 4…Bb4+ looks like a convenient option. A similar idea is given on page 246 (1.e4 e5 2.d4 exd4 3.Nf3 Bb4+) and although the 2.Bc4 version isn’t exactly transposing, it doesn’t look too difficult to handle.

  92. Indeed, Black is probably slightly better in the “Urusov” version of …Bb4+ after 5.c3 dxc3 6.bxc3 Bc5 {or 6…d5!? as recommended by Kaufman} 7.O-O (7.e5 d5) 7…d5! 8.exd5 (8.Bxd5 c6!) 8…O-O. I would think that White has to play 6.bxc3 here, with Black’s knight attacking e4, unlike in the Center Game version of …Bb4+.

  93. I noticed that in chapter 1 A.Bc4 the move 6.Nh4 isn’t mentioned. Here after 6…g6 7.f4 we can’t play our plan of going 7…f5. We have to play 7…Qe7 and after 8.f5 Qg7 we cannot transpose to the lines mentioned in the book.
    6.Nh4 is equally as popular as 6.0-0

  94. Now that Nigel has revealed his new book ‘ Winning’ are you able to tell us a bit more? His best attacking games, general advice on attacking/turning draws into wins or something else. Shouldn’t be dull at least….think attacking was his greatest strength….he really had Kasparov on the ropes for most of his white games in the their match but never got in that final.punch in many of them (needed those boxing gloves on the cover?). It was his.defence and losing too many games let him down.

  95. Hi,

    I wanted to ask if there was any update on Negi 6 regarding a forecasted publication date?

    Thank you for your time and assistance.

  96. Only joking….Everyman got swallowed up as well as New in Chess and iChess by the Play Magnus behemoth so no doubt they have QC in their sights ?

  97. New newsletter out…. Looking good for release dates but did I miss the Mickey Adams book news? Real feather in the QC crown. Don’t know much about the co-author. Is it a similar concept to the expert/pupil socratic dialogue or like Secrets of grandmaster play by Nunn and Griffiths where it’s a combined effort?

  98. @JB

    Yes, I was amazed at that oversight as well: they showed the cover for the Adams book but then didn’t say a word about it.

  99. If you are compiling an errata on Negi 5, on page 267 the mainline given in bold is “7 f3 0-0 8 0-0-0 exd4” but then followed by “8 Nxd4 no black move 9 0-0-0.


  100. Peter Griffiths was a strong player in Britain in late 1960s. Apart from John Nunn co-authorship, he wrote a couple of decent endgame books – he’s a bit stronger than Mickey’s collaborator !
    All the new books look great.

  101. Regarding the Adams book and the newsletter, we had a number of just-published and about-to-be-published titles to promote, so we focused on those rather than the ones which are slightly further off.

    About the Caro-Kann: there is no particular reason to think any shop will have the book in stock before the 17th, but you never know if a delivery might arrive early somewhere.

    The Berlin Defence will not be such a long way off.

  102. I’ve drifted away from Forward Chess to Chessable for electronic versions of books but want to not duplicate buying the physical book and then find it is going to appear on Chessable. I know Gambit have an agreement with Chessable that it’s only their back catalogue that will appear on Chessable not their new releases…does QC have a similar policy or will any or all of your excellent new releases feature on Chessable so I can choose which format I’ll buy the book in? Thanks

  103. @notyetagm
    I would not say they are delayed. I would rather say that it takes time for my partner to unbreak her leg… I am a glorified house keeper at the moment…

    Andrew will start editing it on Monday or Tuesday.

    No such policy. Also, we will be available on other platforms too. Hopefully we can finalise the ChessAble deal very soon. They have been so busy counting all their possessions and new acquisitions I think :-). To me, the right thing is to be available on all platforms.

  104. hello

    not sure my next questions can be answered

    the two volumes of G. Jones repertoire for White are schedulled for this year?
    or only the first volume?
    what are the contents of each one, and which will be the first one to be published

    thanks and keep up the good work

  105. George Hollands

    Just seen the 2021 Catalogue.

    Might as well just sign my paycheck over to QC now. Probably easier just to work for you and get paid in books.

    Some very exciting titles on the horizon! I’m most interested in the GM training books and the Fischer vol. Do you have a rough plan when you hope they will be ready for?

  106. JB – Many of our new books have appeared on Chessable. This will continue for some, though not all, of our future titles. Generally, opening repertoire and training/exercise books are the ones which are more likely to be available through them.

    Luis – The two Coffeehouse volumes will be published together, not too far into the future. Vol.1 covers 1…c5/1…c6; Vol.2 covers 1…e5/1…e6; and other defences are divided between volumes in a logical way. Hopefully not many weeks until we announce a publication date.

    George – by GM Training, I assume you mean Jacob’s “A Matter of Technique” books. Without being too specific, I will say the plan is for the first of them, plus “The Road to Reykjavik”, to be out sometime closer to the middle of the year than the end of it.

  107. @Andrew Greet
    Concur it’s a very nice set of books in the catalogue, with it seems to me a lower emphasis on openings books than in the past (just an impression, not crunched the numbers). The Gulko/Sneed book is missing from this years catalogue, but I saw on Facebook it is still in this years plans which is good news.

    It looks like you are commemorating 50 years since Fischer’s ascent to chess throne with a series of books. Guess next year’s catalogue will have the book Marin said he was writing on Fischer Spassky a few years ago. Though to me if anyone does that book, you might as well include the 30 games from 1992 too (30 year anniversary).

  108. @Andrew Greet
    Thanks Andrew but it would be good to know which specific books are due to go on Chessable as Chess direct are already offering preorders of your latest books and don’t want to duplicate a purchase. Even if its a definite no for some titles that would be good to know. thanks

  109. So I see the 2021 catalog was published. Out of curiosity, are the books listed in the order they will be published in each subtopic?

    Meaning, for example, the Openings books, does the fact that the Dutch books are listed at the top and the QGA book listed at the bottom mean that of all the opening books, the Dutch will be published first and the QGA last?

    If so, I guess I have a wait this year. The 2 Matter of Technique books and the QGA one are my biggest ones of interest in this year’s list. Possibly the coffee house 1.e4 books, but those would be a distant third compared to the other two.

  110. @Paul H

    Paul H :
    Outside of Shankland, has any relatively recent new QC book appeared on chessable?

    None really….e3 poison is the only recent opening book and that’s not really fitting the Chessable format as it’s more a system than a repertoire. Esserman’ s Morra is almost a decade old so hardly counts as modern. I appreciate that books in the catalogue or newsletter are well down the pipeline and that decisions about formats are far off but all I’d like to know is if any of the 5 books in ‘coming soon’ will be in that format by the time they are published rather than ‘ some but not all will be available’ before I buy them. Pretty please

  111. Andrew

    Thank you.
    I also wonder whether some information on G.Jones books can be disclosed.
    In particular, I wonder whether he would suggest the four pawns attack against the Alekhine.
    I have seen he often (only) plays it as White and i have seen a recent NIC article where
    he is suggesting it as White.

  112. JB – Jacob sort of answered the question about Chessable (see reply 164) but for some reason his comment didn’t go up immediately and John had to approve it a day or two late. As Jacob mentions, there was something to do with our contract with Chessable which still has to be agreed upon, which is why our most recent titles have yet to appear on their platform. So, you’ll understand that no promises can be made regarding specific books at this stage.

    Luis – Yes, it’s the 4PA against the Alekhine.

  113. Patrick – no, the books have not been specially arranged in the exact order of expected publication. Although by coincidence, the QGA probably will be the last of the opening books shown on that side of the page.

  114. As usual with QC , a lot of good books are on the way. I’m really curious about G.Jones books … will he suggest some gambit in his repertoire ? At least it’s “Coffehouse” 😉

  115. Coffeehouse actually involves fewer immediate gambit lines than the title might suggest.
    Instead, I would describe the repertoire as consisting of lines which are somewhat unusual (some lines carry greater surprise value than others), but which pack a real punch, while at the same time being fully sound.

  116. With it likely being the last of the opening books published, I am guessing nobody will know for a while, but I am hearing all this rage about sacrificing the exchange in the 3.e4 line (3…b5 4.a4 c6 5.axb5 cxb5 6.Nc3 a6 7.Nxb5 axb5 8.Rxa8 Bb7). Even if it is not the main line covered in the book, I wonder if they will at least put a few pages to it, or if they have figured out a refutation to it and mention somewhere why it is no good.

    I mostly have played the Nf3 lines, not the e4 lines as White, and only a handful of games with Black, mostly facing 3.Nf3. I can think of only one time where I faced 3.e4 and played 3…Nc6 as I also played the Chigorin at the time.

  117. @Franck – I would wager the Rossolimo/Moscow lines. He wrote a huge book for another publisher a few years back on those lines (for White), and I seem to recall that against 2…e6, he went for some very unusual King’s Indian Attack line.

    Now what I don’t know if whether Jones sticks to his openings like it’s a religion, like Sveshnikov and his Advance French/c3-Sicilian/Sveshnikov Sicilian as Black/etc or others who stick to one thing, or if he is a loose cannon and hops around a lot from opening to opening.

    But don’t be surprised if it is Rossolimo, Moscow, and KIA.

  118. Franck – you would do well to take Patrick up on his wager! 😉

    Nothing wrong with the Rossolimo, but Gawain isn’t known for recycling his old books; besides, lines such as the 3…g6 Rossolimo with 4.Bxc6 dxc6 etc. are fine for a deep positional struggle, but not really in line with the Coffeehouse ethos of putting Black under pressure and posing unusual problems.
    It’s not possible to prove an advantage against the Sicilian, or to recommend anything completely new (other than novelties which come later – of which there are many). But Gawain’s recommendations present Black with trickier problems than I ever could have imagined.

  119. As always, we will give a publication date when we can be reasonably sure of it. Hopefully this won’t be too far in the distance.

  120. A Super Talent

    @Andrew Greet
    When are all the latest Quality Chess Books coming to India? Have been waiting for a really long time!
    Also, could you give a teaser on what to expect from Gawain’s repertoire? Is it playable in correspondence as well?

  121. @Andrew Greet
    I expect some sort of modern grandprix against the sicilian.
    But what do we play against 1…e5. Should be the kings gambit?!

  122. I’m wondering if Jones will recommend 2 Nc3 Nc6 3 Bb5 against the Sicilian. Aleksei Pridorozhni does well with it.


  123. @Andrew Greet
    I would love to hear any hints you can give about what lines will be recommended. I will purchase both volumes in hard cover when they come out, but would love to start getting familiar with some lines now so I can jump right in when the books are released.

  124. Those who have asked about the choice of lines in Coffeehouse and other books: thanks for your interest but I think it’s best that we don’t set a precedent for giving out those details and leading you all to expect it for every book.
    Once the excerpts are made available, it’ll take about four weeks for printing and shipping to take place, so you’ll have plenty of time to do any preliminary checking of the recommended lines.

    As for Marin’s Dutch books, I have starting proofreading Vol.1 and John will do the same for Vol.2 any day now, so the end is not far off.

  125. @TD

    Thank you! Nice to see that the recommendation against 1.Nf3, f5 2.d3 is different from Marins.
    More options is good. I will buy the book.

  126. It is a great book. I recently bought a book from another publisher on the Grunfeld. I am sure that the analysis was great but pages of computer analysis are completely impractical for 99% of players. The 5H4 line gets pages of sharp analysis. Maybe you will face it once every two years and most of us will have completely forgotten the analysis.
    Sedlaks book on the other hand
    (1) high chance of getting your line on the board.
    (2) yes there are important move order issues that are well covered but at a managable level
    (3) It is unlikely that huge changes in theory will happen
    (4) A computer may give some lines as white +.25. Big deal if you are comfortable with the positions.
    Funnily enough the sidelines are i think dealt with sligjtly less well as he clearly favours 1..e6.
    Perhaps get Marin on sidelines as well.

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