Pawn play is a fundamental aspect of chess strategy, yet often neglected in chess literature. In this, his second book on pawn play, Super-GM Sam Shankland sheds light on the vital topic of Passed Pawns.
Passed pawns – whether connected, lone or protected – are common occurrences in middlegames and endgames, and your effectiveness in playing with or against them will make the difference between victory and defeat. Just like in his previous book, Shankland breaks down each topic into a series of crystal-clear guidelines to aid the reader.
Breaking down the principles of Pawn Play to basic, easily understandable guidelines every chess player should know.
Levenfish describes in vivid detail the atmosphere of pre- and post-revolutionary Russia, giving first-hand impressions of some of the most famous names in early-twentieth-century chess, such as Lasker, Rubinstein, Alekhine and Capablanca – all of whom were personally known to him. Some of the stories stay long in the memory: descriptions of the hardships endured by players in the first USSR Championship that took place in the difficult years of the Civil War; of idyllic trips to the Caucasus and Crimea; of grim struggles for survival in the winter of 1941.
Soviet Outcast comprises Levenfish’s annotations to 79 of his finest games, translated from his Russian autobiography, plus extensive bonus material including several games compiled from other sources, mostly with annotations by Levenfish himself, as well as a 30-page Afterword by GM Jacob Aagaard. This is the first time Levenfish’s memoir has been published in English.
his book is intended for chess players who want to learn the Spanish opening and are looking for a quick overview of the major variations. For each line, several sample games are followed by tactical positions typical for that line. Any player who plays the Spanish Opening either as White or Black – can benefit from learning the specific middlegame themes presented here
Tired of being recommended to study chess tactics but the tactics in the books do not look anything like what could arise in the openings you play? So am I! Well, here is the answer: opening specific tactical exercises split up by variation from actual games.
In this book, you will face hundreds of tactical positions, not only combinations but positions with tactical elements for you to solve and familiarize yourself with. This will help you be extra tactically alert when you are playing your games in this opening.
This book covers all the variations of the exciting Budapest (1.d4 Nf6 2.c4 e5 3.dxe5 Ng4) and Fajarowicz Gambits (1.d4 Nf6 2.c4 e5 3.dxe5 Ne4). With well more than 200 positions and annotated solutions you are bound to improve your tactical eye in typical positions of these openings and learn a ton about the openings when you study the solutions.
The previous book of Khalifman and Soloviov, The Modern Scotch, discussed how to counter 1.e4 e5 in the most direct, aggressive and sometimes even risky fashion. Their new work explores a radically different approach. It presents a White repertoire based on the Four Knights Game, and in particular, the main line – the traditional system with 4.Bb5. The authors summarise the method they propose in the following way: 1. White controls the centre, develops quickly and castles. He DOES NOT strive for a direct clash with the opponent after the first few moves in the opening. 2. He begins active operations only after the completion of his development; as a rule, these will take place in the centre and on the kingside. 3. White strives to reach positions in which basic strategical principles, correct evaluation and ability to choose the correct plan will be at least as important as calculation and theoretical knowledge. 4. He still fights for an opening advantage even though the focus is on the middlegame.
In the Alapin System White's strategic idea is extremely simple. He prepares to advance with d2-d4, to build a solid pawn centre and then dictate the play. He will have to pay for this with the fact that his queen's knight has been deprived of the best square for its development, but it may have other suitable squares (in many variations this will be not the d2-square but a3). Secondly, it very often happens that after d4 cxd4 cxd4, White's queen's knight still gets access to its best square on c3. The modern evaluation of this system is that Black has comfortable enough lines in which he can obtain an acceptable game. The authors try to prove that not all of these lines are equally good.
Books on chess exercises are usually about tactics. But in most of the positions that you think about during a game, there is no tactical solution. What you are doing most of the time is trying to find a way to improve your position or weaken your opponent’s, by applying strategic rules.
Experienced chess trainer Emmanuel Bricard has created a practical exercise manual with carefully selected and tested training positions that teach you how to develop the right plan.
Russian International Master Maxim Chetverik has written a strategy textbook containing 75 deeply annotated positional games that show players how to devise plans to handle a number of key strategic themes, such as when to open up the game, how to activate the pawn chain, how to carry out positional sacrifices and many others. Unlike most other textbooks, the strategic plans are viewed as battles where the plans of each player clash, and Maxim analyzes why one plan comes out on top.
Also unlike most other textbooks, all example games are drawn from grandmaster play in the 21st century, some played in 2018, and consider the plans right out of the opening stage. This makes the book of particular value to players wishing to better understand the strategies that the openings they play may lead to, bearing in mind the author is an openings expert with ten openings books published. The majority of games are played by elite grandmasters, including Carlsen, Caruana, Anand, Kramnik, Karjakin, Giri, So, Vachier-Lagrave, Aronian, Mamedyarov, Nakamura, Gelfand, Svidler, Ivanchuk, Shirov, Leko, J. Polgar, Topalov, Kamsky, Morozevich, Korchnoi and Spassky.
Chetverik introduces and illustrates the concepts of macroplan and microplan, which provide a simple structural framework for players seeking to devise plans in their own games. The macroplan is the specific way to achieve the required result (usually, a win), for example, the successful exploitation of a queenside pawn majority. The microplan is a way of solving a local problem that involves several moves, such as transferring a knight from a bad square to a good one. Ideally, a macroplan is a chain of sequential and carefully calculated microplans.
This book is largely aimed at strong club players wishing to improve, or their coaches. The recommended Elo range is approximately 1,800 – 2,200, although it may of course be of interest to players a bit lower and a bit higher than this range.
Award-winning author Charles Hertan has revisited the gold mine of Judit Polgar’s games and selected her best and most instructive tactics. They are arranged by theme and presented with helpful explanations and lots of practical advice. You will be inspired by her clever traps, stunning sacrifices and cunning endgame tricks. You will learn from her tactical vision, calculating skills and counter-intuitive ideas. Strike Like Judit is a riveting guide that will help you win more games as you will find killer moves more easily and more quickly.
Nowadays, chessplayers spend almost all their free time preparing openings, and rarely spend the time necessary to perfect the vitally important technique of calculating. Regular training in solving and playing out endgame studies is a good recipe for eliminating that shortcoming.
This training is directed at developing resourcefulness, fantasy (in chess, these qualities are called "combinative acuity"), and the readiness to sacrifice material, in pursuit of the goal - winning!
How do we develop good habits of winning endgame play? There are lots of manuals, but this may be the first in which a famous practical player, a trainer with a world-renowned name, and a study composer who has earned the title of International Grandmaster of Composition, share their views in one and the same book.
Matthew Sadler is one of the UK's strongest ever players. He became a grandmaster at 19, won the British Championship twice and, amongst other amazing achievements, made a gold medal winning score of 10.5/13 on board four for England in the 1996 chess Olympiad.
In 2000 Matthew quit full-time chess. However, he re-emerged ten years later in 2010 to play a rapidplay tournament in Wageningen, Holland which he promptly won with 7/7. In 2011 he played in strong international events at Barcelona and Oslo and won them with the Fischer-like scores of 8.5/10 and 8/9 respectively. After a decade away from the game, these results are simply astounding.
Matthew's extraordinary ability at chess stems not simply from natural talent but is based on a brilliant aptitude for preparing to play. He understands exactly what needs to be studied and how to go about it. In this book he recounts how he organised the preparation for his 'comeback' and from his results the success of this method is self-evident. In this book Matthew shares his secrets and reveals how to:
– Incorporate unorthodox openings into your repertoire;
– Study middlegame situations;
– Understand what is important in the endgame.