However, what shocked me over the last few days was the heavy-handed response to a review of the book, The Dynamic Reti from GM Nigel Davies.
This led to a flurry of exchanges where GM Davies threatened legal action against a blog post and it was followed up with the supposed offending poster issuing an apology under that same post. GM Davies subsequently put out a somewhat-sniping retort under the header Nigel Davies emails (see below).
GM Davies also described what he feels in his blog at here and here.
If anyone is wondering about the original content, I'll give a quick break down.
In a reply (since removed) to the blog post on Echo Echo, the OP opined that Davies's work is comparable to Keene's work which might suggest some form of impropriety (ie. mildly alluding that Davies might be using Keene's analysis in his book since he lists Keene's book in his bibliography).
However, I wonder what possessed him to write the following to S&B CC:
I thought this was way over-the-top.
"Thanks for removing those comments, I was left no choice but to defend myself. I see that a lot of the negative stuff is still up there and I do have something to say about this.
I’ve probably bought more chess books than your entire club put together, including some by the most damned authors out there. And it’s never occurred to me to try and do any kind of nitpicking hatchet job on them.
Why? The way I see it, books are just about the best value out there, you can gain insights into just about anything for the price of a few pints. And even the supposedly ‘worst’ authors (which ain’t me or Glenn Flear btw) usually have something interesting to say.
As an example, I started playing the Kan Sicilian after using a book on this opening that got really slated by the reviewers. It gave me an idea about the lines after which I started playing around with the thing with a board and pieces. It never occurred to me that I should be spoonfed or that this book should be perfect in every way. It saved me heaps of time in getting to grips with the thing and provided a starting point for my own thoughts.
Maybe the question you should be asking is why people are so negative about books. I believe the that the answer may be the key to why they’re not better players."
Chess materials get reviewed all the time and reviewers by and large tend to be subjective because each reviewer's bias, perception and knowledge is different. Anyone reading Chesscafe's Checkpoint articles and John Watson's chess reviews would know what I mean. Some chess books gets ripped to absolute shreds.
Me? I find this whole event to be a storm in a teacup considering the original offending post was over a year old.
A close friend once told me,"Opinions are like assholes. Everyone has one."