Archive for Reviews

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Tuesday, May 27, 2014 21:45
Mikhail Tal was one of the first world class players I saw in real life: as a kid, during my first visit to the Hoogovens chess tournament in Wijk aan Zee,  I almost ran into him when I entered the playing hall. Even this extremely brief encounter made a lasting impression on me. Later, when I started studying Tal's games, I became fascinated by...
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Friday, May 09, 2014 9:46
I sometimes wonder if the lengthy, in-depth type of book review has any kind of future. Wouldn't it be better to just get it over with, hear the reviewer's superficial opinion, yadda yadda yadda, and move on? What's the point elaborating on arguments if they can also be summarized in a couple of nice one-liners? I think it's an inevitable truth...
Tuesday, December 24, 2013 9:54
Playing the French is the second opening repertoire book by the Quality Chess authors Jacob Aagaard and Nikolaos Ntirlis. I was very enthusiastic about their first book, The Tarrasch Defence (2011), not because I am a great fan of this opening myself, but because Aagaard and Ntirlis presented an original yet consistent and convincing framework...
Wednesday, November 27, 2013 14:21
It’s not easy to find time to read chess books when there’s a World Championship match going on at the same time. Still, chess publishers around the globe managed to reach me over the last few months, and I felt compelled to read some of the most interesting books anyway. So below is an overview of some of the chess books I read recently.  Before...
Review: Magnus Force
Monday, October 21, 2013 14:15
Magnus Carlsen is a phenomenon. He could recently be seen on enormous billboards all over the world posing next to supermodel and Lord of the Rings actress Liv Tyler; he’s been a guest to The Colbert Report; and he has featured on the cover of Time magazine. But why, precisely, is he such a phenomenon? This has always slightly puzzled me. Few...
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Wednesday, September 25, 2013 12:32
The King’s Gambit by John Shaw, published by Quality Chess, sets out to be the definitive modern reference of the classic romantic opening – and it does a very good job of it. The analysis is exhaustive, objective and vigilant, and the thorough coverage and fresh ideas make it a must-have for King’s Gambit aficionados. However, the lack of...
Thursday, September 05, 2013 12:50
Some of you might remember my review of Viktor Moskalenko’s controversial book Revolutionize your chess!. Already back then, some readers pointed out a similar method for ‘discovering the strongest move’ by the Russian master Alexander Shashin. Now, Shashin has published his theories in English, and many readers have asked me what I think of his...
Review: Garry Kasparov on Garry Kasparov part 2: 1985-1993
Friday, August 16, 2013 15:37
Every chess aficionado should own the complete series of recent Kasparov publications: Garry Kasparov on My Great Predecessors, Garry Kasparov on Modern Chess, and Kasparov on Garry Kasparov. Many, of course, do – myself included. The entire series is a miracle of chess passion and erudition and its most recent addition – Garry Kasparov on Garry...
Review: The Perfect Pirc-Modern
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Tuesday, June 11, 2013 13:35
The Perfect Pirc-Modern is Viktor Moskalenko's latest book on one of the openings he has been playing throughout his career. It is Moskalenko's fifth book, and recommended for players who want to try out this opening complex as well as players who already have it on their repertoire. Viktor Moskalenko (1960) is a Ukrainian grandmaster who has been...
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Friday, May 03, 2013 13:00
As a scientist gathers information about a certain subject for his research, a chess player studying a new opening wants to be aware of all previously published information. Recently I read another book on the Benkö Gambit which definitely helps to form a more objective opinion about this opening. The author of The Dynamic Benkö Gambit is the well...

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