Bishop or knight? An eternal dilemma! The legendary Bobby Fischer would likely vote for the bishop. Other authorities like Nimzowitsch would prefer the knight. The truth is somewhere in the middle. Of course, it is clear a bishop usually dominates in open positions while the knight should be preferred in blocked positions. But what does that “usually” mean? Are there exceptions? Sure, a bishop can dominate even in a blocked position if the controlled diagonal is important. Further, the knight can dominate in open positions if there is a good outpost or influential place for it.
The pawn structure definitely determines the minor pieces’ prospects, and it is extremely important to predict the future properties of the pawn structure early in the game. Nowadays it is not enough to start thinking about the endgame in the middlegame. Today’s masters begin their opening strategy based on the arising endgames! Knowing the arising endings may give you some advantage even if the opponent obtained some initiative as was Petrosian’s manner.
By studying this book you should discover many properties regarding the combat between the bishop and knight which will open new horizons in your chess understanding.
In this book (Volume 1) I will present direct combat between the bishop and the knight. You may consider this a prelude to Volume 2 where the story will develop with more complex battles as other pieces will be added. There will be sections with rooks and queens added where either the knight or bishop will be superior. I have no doubts that if you carefully analyze the material in both volumes, you will master both the basic and advanced endgames where one of the key factors will be the material imbalance between having either the bishop or the knight.
The material is divided into four chapters, and two parts, depending if we have an endgame with queens or rooks on the board. I have decided to keep the focus on endgames because in middlegames, some other factors may simply prevail. In endgames, the importance of having a knight against a bishop just increases! For easier understanding, I suggest that before studying any example, you should determine which side will prevail and you can find the solutions yourself. Of course, you can work directly from the book and even skip some examples, and you can analyze them in random order.
In the book, you will find Capablanca’s famous postulate about the queen and knight cooperating better than the queen and bishop, and some exceptions as well. For first time, you will hear of my audacious “postulate” that a rook and knight will “more often” prevail over a rook and bishop combination. I know this may sound absurd. I know Tal and Fischer would have disagreed and probably would have been indignant to hear this. I know many strong players would rather have a rook and bishop combination, basing their approach on the past masterpieces of these giants. But what about Rubinstein, and especially Karpov and Andersson – these masters had a great influence on my style and my coaching methods. Furthermore, I have based my “postulate” on statistics that I obtained after deeply searching for examples for this book. I hope it will reopen a debate about this material balance. My opinion is made, and I would like to apologize to all “bishop fans”.
I have decided to use actual words instead of symbols to explain my ideas, methods and plans. I think that it should be right in this computer era that is full of numbers, digits, etc. that words and sentences from the coach are simply irreplaceable to explain strategy and endgames.
I am sure that this book will demystify that “eternal battle” and help you to broaden your horizons. I am sure you will find a lot for yourself in this book.
The Ultimate Fischer Collection
This book by Zenón Franco about the games of Robert (“Bobby”) James Fischer uses the “Move-by-Move” system, which is ideal for both learning and teaching chess. The book is based on a question-and-answer format to involve the reader and is therefore ideal training material.
Bobby Fischer revolutionised chess in the twentieth century. Thanks to his dazzling career and his demands for better conditions for players, chess was popularised and was converted into a professional activity with many offshoots. Fischer's practically single-handed struggle to overthrow Soviet domination of the world of chess is an achievement difficult to match.
To fairly experienced chessplayers, some of Fischer's games will already be well-known, or at least familiar, but memories of many of these games are likely to be hazy, so that taking a fresh look at them, using the Move-by-Move method, is likely to be very beneficial
As usual, Franco is keen to highlight the practical aspects of competitive chess, since we are playing, not against computers, but against human beings like ourselves, who make mistakes, like or dislike the position, get tired etc.
This is a chess book, not a biography, but it includes interesting anecdotes from Fischer's tournaments in Argentina which will probably be new to readers.
Victor Bologan presents a complete Caro-Kann repertoire for Black that is much more than just a lucidly explained and highly playable set of responses. In many lines Bologan provides two options to handle the Black position.
In this book Victor Bologan covers all relevant lines with a well laid-out, clearly explained and eminently playable set of responses.
He presents TWO different options against every main line: a common sense approach and an aggressive weapon.
(WEBSTORE SPECIAL - You can purchase the book on our webstore and access it from all your Forward Chess apps. Pull down to refresh the "Books" tab in your mobile apps).
Boost Your Chess 1 continues Artur Yusupov’s Fundamentals series, helping players to build their skills on solid foundations. Yusupov guides the reader towards a higher level of chess understanding using carefully selected positions and advice. This new understanding is then tested by a series of puzzles.
Artur Yusupov was ranked No. 3 in the world from 1986 to 1992, just behind the legendary Karpov and Kasparov. He has won everything there is to win in chess except for the World Championship. In recent years he has mainly worked as a chess trainer with players ranging from World Champion Anand to local amateurs in Germany, where he resides.
Winner of the 2009 Boleslavsky Medal from FIDE (the World Chess Federation) as the best instructional chess books in the world (ahead of Garry Kasparov and Mark Dvoretsky in 2nd and 3rd place).