The King’s Gambit by John Shaw, published by Quality Chess, sets out to be the definitive modern reference of the classic romantic opening – and it does a very good job of it. The analysis is exhaustive, objective and vigilant, and the thorough coverage and fresh ideas make it a must-have for King’s Gambit aficionados. However, the lack of strategic explanations and the sheer density of the material will make it a hard slog for the casual reader.

By GM David Smerdon