Until very recently, there were basically two main books on olefin metathesis:
Olefin Metathesis and Metathesis Polymerization (1997) edited by K. J. Ivin and J.C. Mol
In retrospect, it could be titled: Metathesis Before the Ruthenium Era. Even though I have been working in the field for some time, I was amazed by the depth of my ignorance concerning the early days of olefin metathesis.
Handbook of Metathesis (2003) edited by R.H. Grubbs
Presented as a must-have for every organic and polymer chemist, this handbook is definitely one of the main references in the field. It’s a massive three-volume collection that covers all the aspects of olefin metathesis from catalyst developments, to the applications in organic and polymer synthesis.
Now we have two more:
Metathesis in Natural Product Synthesis: Strategies, Substrates and Catalysts (2010) edited by J. Cossy, S. Arseniyadis and C. Meyer
I have been wondering when someone would write a book emphasizing the huge impact metathesis had on natural product synthesis. Well, the wait is finally over. I have just ordered a copy, and even before having read it, I can bet it will be highly cited soon.
Green Metathesis Chemistry (2010) edited by V. Dragutan, A. Demaonceau, I. Dragutan and E. Sh. Finkelshtein
These proceedings of the sixth NATO ASI meeting on Green Metathesis organized in Bucharest in the summer of 2008 will give you a great overview of some of the very recent developments in the various areas of olefin metathesis. And like me you might even want to check out the proceedings of the previous meetings.