The Ragozin Complex is a flexible and versatile chess opening system. This important variation in the Queen’s Gambit was employed by great champions of the 20th century like Alekhine and Capablanca and it remains a dangerous weapon in the hands of modern top-level players like Levon Aronian, Vladimir Kramnik and Vasily Ivanchuk.
But what exactly is The Ragozin Complex? Amazingly, this has never before been explained in a comprehensive book. Acclaimed chess author Vladimir Barsky has now filled this gap. He pays tribute to the legendary Soviet player and writer Isaak Lipnitsky whose ideas on the Ragozin were a part of his famous Questions of Modern Chess Theory, published in 1956.
While many of Lipnitsky’s ideas are still of value today, The Ragozin Complex sizzles with fresh and topical material from recent times, systematically collected in seven chapters that explain all the plans and counterplans in the critical lines.
For the first time, amateurs can acquaint themselves with the intricacies of the Ragozin system and start playing this flexible opening with confidence. But also professional chess players will see many secrets of this system unveiled by this practical overview.
Vladimir Barsky (1969) is an International Chess Master, a successful coach and an experienced journalist from Russia. He has written several successful books on chess openings: The Modern Philidor Defence (2010), A Universal Weapon 1.d4 d6 (2011), and, together with grandmaster Alexander Morozevich, The Chigorin Defence According to Morozevich (2007).
Carsten Hansen, ChessCafe:
"With a significant volume of original analysis and improvements over existing theory. The chapters are loaded with detailed explanations of strategic and tactical ideas based on pawn structures and piece play. Barsky has written an amazing book."
Peter Doggers, ChessVibes:
"A wonderful guide (..) It's quite amazing that there hadn't appeared a book on the Ragozin before (..) One of the better opening books I have seen in recent years."
IM John Donaldson, at jeremysilman.com:
"It seems hard to believe that a popular and well respected defense is receiving full-fledged treatment for the first time in half a century! (..) Presently this system is seen predominantly at the professional level but this book should make this aggressive defense popular with those in the amateur ranks."
Martin Rieger, Europa Rochade Magazine:
"A delightful freshness keeps the reader in thrall (..) A fantastic opening book and a labor of love."
Phil Adams, 3Cs Book Reviews:
"One can learn a great deal from this book, both from Lipnitsky's insights and the more up-to-date theory provided by its 21st century author, IM Barsky, for whom this book was clearly a labour of love (..) For many players this will provide a good answer to the question of what to aim for when White avoids the Nimzo-Indian by playing 3.Nf3."
Lubomir Kavalek, The Huffington Post:
"Vladimir Barsky brought Lipnitsky's work into the 21st century, enhancing the original ideas with new games and new developments, and creating a unique opening manual."
Marshtower Chess Reviews:
"Those with the Nimzo-Indian and QGD (and even QGA) already in their repertoire may find some useful transpositions with which to annoy their unsuspecting opponents."
Glenn Flear, Yearbook 102:
"A fascinating blend of history and modern theory, 'The Ragozin Complex' is the author's best book yet."
Joe Petrolito, Australasian Chess Magazine:
"Barsky offers a good blend of variations and commentary on the basic ideas (..) A fine example of how a quality opening book should be written."
P.P.O. Kane, The Compulsive Reader, on 'A Universal Weapon' (2010) by Vladimir Barsky:
“This is an excellent opening book. Barsky gives a detailed account of the the opening, its various nuances and subtleties, and he considers as well the kinds of middlegames that can arise from it.”