This post is inspired by some recent videos by GM Ben Finegold and GM Roman Dzindzichashvili, as well as a few recent articles here, and so very good (but sadly arrested) Chess Mentor lessons.
I'm not a serious chess player - I'm too lazy, and too easily distracted by the busy daily grind. But I'd love to be, and occasionally I get the energy/motivation to study for a bit.
I vaguely dream to get to IM level. I don't think I have anything like the talent or the dedication needed to become a GM, but IM seems doable if one day I put in the effort.
I've got quite a few chess books, mostly unread or partially read. There is one chess book that I always wanted to see, and have yet to find: a great general opening book. If one day I get to master level and I still can't find this book, maybe I'll try to write it myself (says the very lazy A-class-on-a-good-day player).
What I want is a book that takes each major opening, both for black and for white, and gives 1 or 2 games per opening explaining step-by-step, move-by-move, the purpose/aims behind it.
I'm starting to think I must make it for myself on Fritz/Chessbase using the content of various videos, articles, and Mentor exercises here. It's one major item that I'd love to see on chess.com - the book opening thing doesn't do it. It is basically an encylopedia without any explanation: ie both too much and too little information.
Too many openings, rather than just the main say 20 or 40 for black and for white; too little, as you have the moves but not the reasons (this you can work out mostly), and not the general plan/ideas of the opening (much harder to work out for yourself).
I've found lots of books which give good/deep coverage of a few openings; or quick coverage for a small range of opening that the authors think are good, and usually either from white's perspective or from black's perspective only; or anything from very basic to very advanced conceptual books on what to generally do in openings. For all of these cases, I've found multiple more than decent books.
However, that's not what I want. I want to be able to have a general very rough idea for *any* major opening for black *and* for white. One of the main reasons I want this: if I can have a rough grasp on what for example black is trying to achieve in the Caro Kann (G-- I hate facing that opening!), maybe I'll be able to think for myself as white how to distrupt their plans and get positions that maybe I can suffer less in... Instead of trying to memorise lines - something I have no aptitude and no patience for doing.
Or for example, as GM Roman Dzindzichashvili showed in a video series on the Italian system, I can get an idea of how a whole series of major openings fit together, and why certain things work and don't work.
There seems to be a market gap for this middle level of detail, or I'm blind and missing a great book that's already there somewhere... If it doesn't exist, I hope I've give some master a good idea for a successful book that I can buy soon. ;-)