During the last minute, I decided to switch my wife's valentine gift to me Alburts
The chess openings as white to Mastering the Chess Openings Volume 1 by John Watson. I am very pleased with this book.
This book is the authors attempt to write a general opening book in a Logical Chess: Move by Move style. This Volume addresses only open and semiopen
games and picks a few lines of each which are covered in depth with the goal of teaching the reader the idea behind the chess opening. It is not meant to be a repertoire
book or do a deep dive into 2000 ways to play the French.
The first 86 pages speak to the nature of chess openings, opening ideas and positional
features and the significance of structure. It then has chapters on some of the major openings: Giuoco
Piano, Two Knights, Ruy Lopez,Kings Gambit, Sicilian, French. Each of these only have a few lines and discusses them in details. These lines are picked for their instructional value and are filled with Diagrams, variations as well as general discussion.
The book speaks to some of the common suggestions of chess as applied to specific situationsie
Don't Pin the Knight with the bishop in uncastled
Don't move too many pawns in the openings
A Rook + Pawn is equal to 2 minor pieces
I have found these rules don't always apply and it is interesting to see the explanations why they do or don't in specific position.
All in all, a well thought out book which Watson and editors must of spent some substantial time on.