I was checking out the page for Dave Vigorito's book on the Gruenfeld in the "Chess Developments" series, and was amused by the little video introducing the series. In it, Byron Jacobs informs us that "the main point of this series...is an attempt to deal with the overwhelming mass of information that has currently become available to chess players". Well, good, that's a relief, especially since Everyman Chess seems to release a new book every other week, helping to overwhelm and bankrupt club players trying to keep up with their neighbors.*
So how do they propose to do this, to cut us poor overwhelmed folk some slack? The answer: by presenting a series that focuses only on what has been happening over the past five years or so. That sounds pretty good, right? You get to cut out a lot of superfluous information and can really home in on a small subset of relevant theory. How bad can that be, anyway? Answer: Vigorito's book is 400 pages long. Further, this is with some ruthless cutting. Your opponents who may not have purchased this state of the art book may gauchely play some ancient theory - you know, from 2007 - and then what are you going to do? (I also notice that the book doesn't cover some of the trendy Anti-Gruenfeld lines like 1.d4 Nf6 2.c4 g6 3.Nc3 d5 4.Nf3 Bg7 5.Qa4+ and 5.Qb3.
Lest someone think I'm making fun of the book, let me assure you that I'm not. I've known Dave for about 15 years and think I have all or nearly all his books. He's a solid IM whose opening works tend to be thorough and rigorous. What I am poking fun at is the ridiculous realm of publicity, especially from the the prodigious people at Everyman, who are well on their way to having written an opening book for every single man on the planet. It may be the greatest opening book in chess history for all I know, but plowing through a 400-page book on the Gruenfeld which, by the publisher's own series blurb will be half out of date in at most two and a half years (assuming the rate at which theory changes holds constant, which it certainly isn't given the increase in players and the power of computers), shouldn't make any sane consumer think he has found the secret to getting on top of opening theory. (By the way, how many of you Gruenfeld aficionados have managed to master Boris Avrukh's two-volume series from a couple of years ago?)
So get the books if you like or don't; that's obviously your choice to make. I'm just offering a little advice: don't buy books based on a publisher's song and dance routine. Any chess book worth your time will require a real investment of time and energy on your part to get anything approaching its full value, and there are no shortcuts to really learning any decent, full-fledged opening. My expectation is that Vigorito has written another good book, but please realize that to buy it is to embrace the "mass of information", not to escape it.
* This might be the best argument for Chess960: not that traditional chess is broken, but to break the absurd treadmill created by chess publishers.