Christian tackles one of the most important issues in chess: how to select candidate moves. He illustrates and discusses many different themes such as:
> entering relatively uncharted territory
> replying on your acquired knowledge
> using intuition
> play prophylactically
Romain Edouard launches a brand new series of exercise books. In this first volume he focuses on middlegames. Romain gives you different instructions for each chapter, so you can improve your general thinking from various angles – exactly as you would face in your own games.
This second book focuses on endgames. There are a lot of things to learn “by heart” about them — but they are often difficult to apply at the board, unless you get exactly the same position as you studied. This is why I believe it is an interesting approach to present an endgames book as a series of exercises, with instructive but practical positions.
In the fifteen chapters and 480 exercises in this book, we will encounter many subjects, for example attack, defense, surprises and hidden moves, while some chapters will be especially dedicated to four great players – Kasparov, Karpov, Fischer and Kramnik – in order to learn about their styles. The last two chapters are also of a very special kind, ‘Extraordinary Wins’, where you will see moves of the kind you won’t meet very often in life, and ‘Special Section’, with exercises requiring special instructions.
After his 2008 book ‘Winning Chess Middlegames’, Grandmaster Ivan Sokolov takes us a step further into his dungeon of middlegame skills. In his well known style, Sokolov focuses on the different aspects of the complex middlegame.
How does one achieve the unique ‘sound’ and distinct technique that are absolutely necessary to become successful at the highest level? It can only be done via a deep understanding of the chess player’s personality and the unique talent that distinguishes him from other soloists. It is here that the role of a coach is of the utmost importance. First, it is necessary to understand the nature of your student’s chess talent, and second, it is important to identify the player’s character and personality traits. His style ought to be harmonious, so that the essence of the human being matches the characteristics of his chess talent. Since it is the same emotionless computer that is now in charge of the purely chess component, it falls upon the coach to deal with the chess player’s personality, mysterious and unknowable as it might be.
Yes, a lot depends on the number and power of dependable cyber assistants, on the size and quality of various chess databases, on the enthusiasm of the seconds and on the ability to work with modern electronic gadgets, but at the highest level, almost all elite chess players have the same tools at their disposal. Thus, as always, everything is decided — as in the ‘good old days’ — by the player's talent, by his unique ability to create. The coach's task is to help his student develop this unique creative side to the maximum. It has so happened that in recent years I have been able to work closely with great chess talents who were at the same time outstanding personalities. I hope that an inside look at this kind of work will be of interest to both specialists and chess fans. I faced several ethical problems when working on this book.
Many of the chess players who appear in these pages are still young; their whole life, including their sports career, lies ahead. That is why I tried to avoid purely personal details and did not reveal any professional secrets. I hope that these players, like me, will be curious to reflect on their own achievements and mistakes, and to take the reader on the difficult journey that allowed them to become prominent chess personalities.
Robert Ris wrote this book especially for club players who want to do more than opening theory.
I assume that most of you have read (and enjoyed!) the first volume of this series, but for those who haven’t: don’t worry. The level of the content of the two books is identical and you can work through the second volume without having studied the first one. However, it’s still not too late to get a copy of the first volume! In the first six chapters I will mainly look at positions with limited material left on the board. Endgames, yes, but also positions where the initiative plays an important role. My aim is to illustrate the specific features of all the pieces and this can best be done without too many other pieces on the board.
This work was originally envisioned as a single-volume collection of my most memorable games, annotated by me, à la Bobby Fischer's My 60 Memorable Games. However the more I delved into the past, the more things started to rise up from the recesses of my memory, which, along with deeper analysis and more detailed introductions to the games, made it more like an anthology of chess stories. Thankfully, my gracious editors decided to split the work into two volumes.
What you are going to find in this first volume is a selection of my most memorable battles on the chessboard during the first of two different periods. It covers the time from my arrival in the USA as an up-and-coming young talent in early 1989, acquiring the freedom to play in any open tournament in the world and quickly gaining precious experience to grow into a challenger for the World Championship in 1996. This period ended with my early retirement from the game to pursue other goals in life.
Grandmaster Insides takes you into the inner world of the American Grandmaster Maxim Dlugy, a former World Junior Champion.
The author’s aim in this volume is to improve the tournament chess player and professional alike in their ability to evaluate and execute crucial and hard-fought practical endgames – either in converting a winning position or holding a draw. This book will also sharpen the player’s overall cognitive competences in practical situations, where the normal laws of endgame theory have little or no value. Dreev accomplishes this by providing categorized and detailed examples with clear commentary from his own tournament games, as well as from other Grandmasters’ at the elite level.
After reading this book the reader will increase his or her knowledge of the typical and not-so-typical methods of play in the middlegame, become familiar with ideas of non-standard solutions to practical problems arising during the game and be able to apply this knowledge in his or her own games.