Latest book reviews of 1 October 2006

Wilhelminalaan 33 


The Netherlands.
John Elburg

                                     Chess Books

Chess results 1921-1930 by Gino Di Felic
McFarland & Company,Inc.,Publishers Box 611
Jefferson,North Carolina 28640.

342 pages
Price $35,00
ISBN 0-7864-23642-X

The third part of Gino Di Felice work on chess results from the years 1921 – 1930 is good for around 940 cross tables and 210 match scores where the reader can find besides the results, all kind of other interesting chess information as sponsor and  first names of the  players.
All together the author has managed to create an important comprehensive chronological reference work on chess results where the included index is very useful to find your way throw these mass of results.
For example the match between Aaron Nimzowitsch and Alfred Brinckmann Kolding,1923 was not as Gero H Maarten wrote in his book on Nimzowitsch “Ein Leben für das Schach” 4-0 in the advantage of  the great Nimzowitch but as Gino Di Felice points out in his work it was only a three game match.
Very interesting in this book is to follow the first steps from Max Euwe who became stronger with every game he played but in Den Haag 1921 he had to do with eleven guilders which was just enough to pay his for his ticket back to Amsterdam, the Dutch rail road has always been very expensive.
Alekhine went home with a impressive amount of 394 guilders, Alexander Münninghoff in his The Biography Max Euwe, New in Chess 2001,a great read but poor in list of events.
A other interesting crossable is the Club tournament of New York 1922,where the ten year old chess prodigy Samuel Herman Reshevsky who played his first tournament with players of master strength.
Samuel Reshevsky describes in Reshevsky best games of chess how excited he was when he won from the famous chess master Janowski; I was so excited and happy that I rushed home in a taxi to tell my father and mother. I couldn’t even sit down in the taxi. I jumped up and down all the way {Funny enough Edward Lasker had a other story that Reshevsky threw his hands around his father’s neck,shouting”I beat a great master, I beat a great master!”
After Edward Lasker it was a shame to permit a boy of ten years to play in such a competition,Lasker in his book Chess Secrets. Interesting is the cross table from the London International Chess Congress of 1922,where the match score of the Minor Tournament is new for me and was won by Arpad Serner but the Woman’s Open which was a great victory for Miss E.C.Price did not make in the book from  Gino Di Felice because this book only handles men’s chess competitions.
Conclusion: Buy this book if you are interested in chess research!

Experts vs. The Sicilian
2nd edition
Quality Chess
228 pages
Price $ 24,99
ISBN 91-975244-6-8

This second updated and corrected version of Experts vs.the Sicilian is one of the most interesting  openings book that a chess player can lay hands on.
First the closing date of this book was 23 August 2006 and the list of contributors is more than impressive for example we have the great GM Peter Wells,GM Sune Berg Hansen,GM Peter Heine Nielsen the rising star from Denmark,GM Viktor Gavrikov etc.
GM Thomas Luther is good for the Najdorf defence and I am very glad that he has the courage to go for the important head line with 1.e4 c5 2.Nf3 d6 3.d4 cxd4 4.Nxd4 Nf6 5.Nc3 a6 6.Bg5! and does not fear to cover the moves in this book with  6.Bg5 e6 7.f4 Qb6 8.Qd2 Qxb2 9.Nb3!? a very logical move that is much more playable than the complicated 9.Rb1 that usually only leads to a complicated draw.
The once feared Polugayevsky is easy waved away with the moves: 1.e4 c5 2.Nf3 d6 3.d4 cxd4 4.Nxd4 Nf6 5.Nc3 a6 6.Bg5 e6 7.f4 b5 8.e5 dxe5 9.fxe5 Qc7 10.exf6 Qe5+ 11.Be2 Qxg5 12.0-0 Ra7 13.Qd3 Rd7 14.Ne4 Qe5 15.Nf3 Qxb2 16.Qe3 Bb7 17.a4 b4 18.Rab1 Qxc2 19.Nfg5 Qc7 and black is in serious trouble as any computer shows,but you shall not find these moves for instance it  the great book from Polugayevsky,Grandmaster Preparation,Pergamon Chess 1980 or in the The Polugayevsky bible from the Dutch Fred van der Fliet.
The main structure of this book with the 65 model games stayed nearly unchanged  the authors included a bright game from the Dutch professional  John van der Wiel.
But you buy this book for the mass of updates between the lines and improvements for both sides of the board.
The combination of  strong chess professionals who are writing about there pet lines is unique and so far I am aware of no other openings book has been written this way before!
Pleasant to mention is that  the editorial team from the Quality went for a bigger eye catching  format as we last saw in the impressive read from Rogozenko on the Sveshnikov.
Conclusion: Buy it  before your opponents does!

Practical chess defence by Jacob Aagaard
Quality Chess
298 pages
Price $ 24,99
ISBN 91-975244-4-1

The famous author and chess teacher from Denmark, candidate grandmaster Jacob Aagaard provides the reader besides a welt of instructive tips a impressive collection from over  200 chess exercises!
These inviting  struggles are divided by the former Danish teacher  in four chapters starting with warming up and than slowly but very instructively from  level one to three
To be honest I have seldom seen so many challenging positions in one chess book where it is difficult to say what I like the most the exercise or Aagaard’s excellent written solutions, these are may times over one page of instructive text all to stimulate your defensive skills.
But there is also a lot of instructive text before Aagaard throws your for the exercises as to use prophylactic thinking to look for the opponent’s treats or it is common to make mistakes when we do not think.
When we play with our hands, assuming something, or otherwise take something for granted, we run a high risk of making mistakes; as in all of these cases we are not thinking.
Aagaard has gone throw a small 5000 positions to write this book where the awareness of tactical details has been of the greatest significance {Aagaard}
One of Aagaard’s heroes among commentators is Palevich his games in Chess Informant are always fanciful, bordering on the absurd,and the annotations of the rather simple tactics he presents to us often contain errors ,where details of great beauty can be added by narcissistic authors {Aagaard}
Defending is for many not the most interesting part of  the game and many prefer to play as Tal but this book from Aagaard can help you to learn how to recognize the write direction for your pieces!
Conclusion: Highly Recommended!

Understanding chess tactics by Martin Weteschnik
Quality Chess
235 pages
Price $ 19,99
ISBN 91-975244-4-1

Understanding chess tactics is a very interesting read from the German chess author Martin Weteschnik who learned to play chess at the age of 25 but after only one year study he managed to win from professional chess cracks!
His scientific approach to chess is very logical as we can see in this book where he learns us to recognize elementary patterns
As he writes in his introduction chess is a game of logic,Logic,in he same way as chess tactics ,depends on collection and processing information.
The book is divided in two major parts; Chapter one, becoming familiar with the pieces and the pin. This all in clearly under divided in ten readable chapters.
Interesting is chapter eight with the X-ray attack; The X –ray is a motif concerned with the control of squares. It is named X-ray attack because  one of the pieces controlling a square is exercising this control indirectly, all the way through an enemy piece.
The X-ray attack is a special case of the reloader: one piece is sacrificed on a certain square and the second occupies it after the first has been eliminated.
A famous practical example is the game  Alekhine – Nestor,Trinidad 1939 and pleasantly covered in this book from Weteschnik.
Included throw this book are instructive tips as the wise words from Tarrasch “It is always dangerous when your king and the opponent’s queen are on the same line.
Conclusion: A very good book to get involved with tactics!
{Rating 1600 – 2000}

Starting out:chess tactics and checkmates by Chris Ward
Everyman Chess
Offered for review by

172 pages
Price $23,95
ISBN 1-85744-418-3

The former British champion GM Chris Ward provides you in this book with everything that you need to get involved with chess as  the necessarily basics, checkmate, the value of pieces and entertaining exercises.
These exercises are instructively explained with a lot of text where the reader is invited in to the world of the Arabian Knight and Greek Gift where the chess student can learn the difference between developing and moving a piece.
Entertaining and useful  are the  100 quick-fire puzzles, where the reader is invited to test his skills.
Seen all the useful tips in this book these exercises must be for the ambitious reader a easy walk in the park!
Conclusion: One of the easiest learning chess books that I ever had in hand!

Discovering chess openings by John Emms
Everyman Chess
248 pages
Price $23,95
ISBN 1-85744-419-1

Discovering chess openings is a introduction van GM John Emms in to the world of chess openings where he prefers understanding of most important strategies as development and  piece mobility above memorizing latest Informator lines.
So you shall not find any hot lines in this book but there for in the place you get a lot of instructive text so it is understandable that the aim of this book lays by players who have no of little knowledge of chess openings.
The local chess player shall certainly enjoy the chapters with chess openings in the practice where they can learn the first 13 moves from the Italian game.
Gambits also get a important turn too from Emms and he handles for the starter exciting gambits  as for example the good old Evans and Danish gambit.
Conclusion: A fine book to get involved with chess openings!

Starting out:Sicilian Scheveningen by Craig Pritchett
Everyman Chess
Offered for review by

190 pages
Price $23,95
ISBN 1-85744-418-3

The famous Scheveningen opening goes back to the year 1923 when Euwe the late Dutch world champion  used this set-up with e6 and d6 against Maroczy in the coastal  of Scheveningen, and this gave the defence his name.
Ever since this opening this opening has been advocated by many famous players where I only want to mention Garry Kasparov who made an immense contribution to the development of this opening.
To ask Craig Pritchett is in my opinion a very good move from Everyman Chess to ask the former Scottish champion to write this starting out book on the Scheveningen defence, because many chess lovers shall remember his best selling book The Sicilian Scheveningen that was published by Batsford back in 1977 where he analysed in great depth 34 great Scheveningen games.
This time Pritchett is even more ambitious and goes for 46 latest Scheveningen games all under the well known starting out explanations and that means in the practise games with understandable text and a lot of useful notes.
The book is divided in six different chapters as the main line with 9…Bd7 {1.e4 c5 2.Nf3 e6 3.d4 cxd4 4.Nxd4 Nf6 5.Nc3 d6 6.Be2 Be7 7.0-0 0-0 8.Be3 Nc6 9.f4 Bd7}mainline without 9..Bd7,Setups with 6.Be3 {The English attack},Keres attack,6.f4 and the Sozin and some other set-ups as 6.g3 and unusual white tries.
Pritchett  already wrote in his first book about the Keres Attack that there is happily no problem here and now thirty years later Keres his dangerous looking bayonet move has dissapeard to the past.
More popular is nowadays the English attack and this is well covered with 23 pages.
Pleasant for the Scheveningen student are the readable introductions of every important line before you go to the illustrated games.
Conclusion: An excellent introduction in to the world of the Scheveningen defence!

Starting out:Queen's gambit accepted by A.Raetsky & M.Chetverik
Everyman Chess
Offered for review by

172 pages
Price $23,95
ISBN 1-85744-415-9

The famous Russian duo GM Alexander Raetsky and IM Maxim Chetverik digs in this latest Starting out book on the good old Queen’s gambit accepted.
Both authors provide the reader with all the necessary knowledge in these 51 illustrated games to adopt this sharp opening.
Going throw this book I was surprised about the large amount of text explanations because they have a reputation of being very compressive with there games but here they have preferred clear cut starting out text.
For example there is a very  good explanation of the move 1.d4 d5 2.c4 dxc4 3.e4 b5 which is very popular under the local chess club scene, and once studied by the great 16th century Portuguese chess player Damiano,after 4.a4 c6 5.b3 e5!6.axb5 cxb5 7.bxc4 Bb4+ 8.Bd2 Qxd4 9.Bxb4 Qxa1 10.Nf3 leads to an unclear situation where Fritz may prefer black but both authors believe that white has full compensation.
Many books as for example Nunn’s Chess Openings does not even mention 3…b5?!
But the best response to 3.e4 is 3…e5 described by the Russian authors as common,old and good response.
As in the Sicilian Scheveningen every important chapter covers an excellent written introduction!
Conclusion: The reader shall find all the necessary knowledge to play and understand the Queen’s gambit accepted!               

Winning chess explained by Zenon Franco
Gambit Publications Ltd
190 pages
Price $26,95
ISBN 978-1-904600-46-8

The legendary Zenon Franco has annotated in this book 50 outstanding chess games all  divided in important key themes as Pawn sacrifice, Exchange sacrifice, The art of manoeuvring, The second weakness, Permanent vs temporary advantages, Regrouping, The King’s destiny, Strange exchanges, Denying the opponent squares and Central breakthrough.
The idea from grouping games to shared characteristics is a old idea from Aron Nimzowitsch who used it in his famous chess books.
Going throw this book we can feel the breath of a great chess teacher, Zenon likes to stimulate the reader not only  with his challening annotations but also with extra  included exercises.
In some of these exercises you even have to find the best plane and best move!
These selected  games are one for one very impressive  and all well explained by a lot of instructive text,words that helps us to become a better chess player.
For example please  look at game 28 Anand – Timman,Wijk aan Zee 2004,where black played; 1.e4 c5 2.Nf3 d6 3.d4 cxd4 4.Nxd4 Nf6 5.Nc3 Nc6 6.Bg5 e6 7.Qd2 a6 8.0-0-0 Bd7 9.f3 Be7 10.Be3 Rc8 11.g4 Na5? And Franco gives around a half page of text why this move is wrong but I like the following words it most; Let’s go to the ‘human’ explanation of blacks  choice, as expressed by Anand.”Timman is not used to playing the positions ensuing from the English Attack,so he opted for an other plan.” This is important from a practical point of view –to be able to lead the opponent into positions that are not usual in his repertoire or where he doesn't feel comfortable.
Between these 50 games are only a few classics as for example the famous classic  Bernstein  – Capablanca, Moscow 194,where the great master surprised the chess world with his {1.d4 d5 2.c4 e6 3.Nc3 Nf6 4.Nf3 Be7 5.Bg5 0-0 6.e3 Nbd7 7.Rc1 b6 8.cxd5 exd5 9.Qa4 Bb7 10.Ba6 Bxa6 11.Qxa6 c5 12.Bxf6 Nxf6 13.dxc5 bxc5 14.0-0 Qb6 15.Qe2}pawn move c4!
That time it was described by many commentators as a very weak move!
Conclusion: A very instructive chess book!

Creative chess opening preparation by Viacheslav Eingorn
Gambit Publications Ltd
158 pages
Price $26,95
ISBN 978-1-904600-58-1

The openings pioneer GM Viacheslav Eingorn handles here in his creative chess openings  preparation book all kind of creative written openings ideas fine explained at the hand of a impressive collection of 130  games. These are not only complete and well analysed wit a lot of instructive text but also overloaded with creative ideas!
Throw this books I found many cool openings ideas as for example  the move 9.d4 against the Marshall Gambit {1.e4 e5 2.Nf3 Nc6 3.Bb5 a6 4.Ba4 Nf6 5.0-0 Be7 6.Re1 b5 7.Bb3 0-0 8.c3 d5} but also other interesting so called all -purpose moves,as the strange looking 3..h6 in the French defence {1.e4 e6 2.d4 d5 3.Nc3 h6} these kind of moves are simple  played to create a link between various schemes of play.Interestingly many of these ideas are played by the great Eingorn himself!
And there are quite a lot of these games in this book well counted a small sixty of them, and all overloaded with creative ideas as for example Eingorn's pet line with 1.d4 e6 2.c4 Bb4 3.Ld2 a5!? gets a lot of attention!
The material is divided in to six major chapters; Experiments in the opening, Disturbing the Equilibrium, Strategic thinking,Opening structures,The modern game of chess and a theoretical kaleidoscope.
Pleasant to mention are moves as  1.e4 d6 2.d4 Nf6 3.Nc3 e5 4.Nf3 Nbd7 5.g4,Shirov – Shaw,Gibraltar 2005 or 1.NF3 Nf6 2,c4 e6 3.Nc3 Bb4 4.g4!? Zviagintsev – Piket,Tilburg 1998 normally you only find these kind of moves in the works from the American chess master Eric Schiller.
In the chapter  modern game of chess,there is a golden classic with the game Tarrasch – Janowski,Vienna 1898;1.e4 c5 2.Pc3 e6 3.Pf3 Pc6 4.d4 cxd4 5.Pxd4 Pf6 6.Pdb5 d6 7.Lf4 e5 8.Lg5 a6 9.Lxf6 gxf6 10.Pa3 f5 11.Dh5 b5 12.Paxb5 axb5 13.Lxb5 Lb7 14.Lc4 Df6 15.Pd5 Dg6 16.Nc7+ and is good enough to fill  nearly three pages of text.
Interesting to mention is the comment after move 16…Kd8? 17.Qxg6 fxg6 18.Nxa8 Bxa8 19.Bd5 Kc7;In annotations by contemporaries this complex ending was assessed as virtually won for white,but we must put this down as an obvious misunderstanding.
Included in this chapter is also  the creative queens move 1.e4 e5 2.Qh5 from the game Nakamura – Sashikiran,Copenhagen/Malmö 2005.
Buy this book for it’s incredible ideas!        
Chess CD's

ChessBase Magazine extra issue 113
September  2006
Campomanes Interview


ISSN 1432-8992
Euro 12.99

ChessBase magazine issue 113 comes with a impressive file from 30906 entries all with out any comments to the games but the file is first class and clean from any double game.
For example from the Open Dutch championship I found 379 entries and all together I counted over 180 different sources of tournaments where the heaviest file goes to the Politiken Cup with 1138 games.
Included in these ChessBase magazines are multimedia files and this time it is completely devoted to a interview with Florencio Campomanes and that takes nearly 50 minutes of your pressures time.
Conclusion: Buy it for the games!

                                  Chess Magazines

British Chess Magazine No.9
Volume 126
September 2006
Price: £3.60

Starting with the Dortmund Sparkassen tounament with a good tournament report and some  fine game notes from Steve Giddins.
A other important contribution is the British championship where some players as Mile Sourtees enjoyed showing his latest homemade brew openings system against Graeme Buckley starting with  ;1.d4 c6 2.c4 f6!? 3.e4 e5 all together you shall find a  full 15 page game report of this major event.
Sam Collins is good for a excellent  games department and the ACT Amsterdam open.
Very readable is the contribution from Steve Giddins on Willeam Winter: Chess Maverick.
Giddins starts his article with; Those of you enjoy trivia might like to consider the following question; with double British champion once served a term in prison?
The answer is someone who figured as the answer in the January 2006 BCM photo competition: William Winter.
Others: are New in brief with the terrible obituary of Jessie Gilbert please also see,,