Latest book reviews of 1 January 2019

Wilhelminalaan 33 


The Netherlands.
           John Elburg

                                                                                                          Chess Books

Chess Opening Traps for kids by Graham Burgess
Gambit Publications Ltd
127 pages

Price $16.95
ISBN 978-1-911465-27-0

The well known award winning Graham Burgess provides the young reader with a highly instructive openings course based on 100 careful
selected openings traps.
As for example in trap 24 we see the Serbian Trap that runs with the move order: 1.e4 c5 2.d4 cxd4 3.c3 dxc3
4.Nxc3 Nc6 5.Nf3 e6 6.Bc4 Qc7 7.0-0 Nf6 8.Qe2?! Ng4! 9.h3?? Nd4! and wins!!
Besides the 100 openings traps there is also a collection of 48 diagrams simple to test your new learned opening skills.
Special attention to position 48,which was from a analysis of a game between Karpov and Miles,which was  a legendary victory for the chess genius from Birmingham.
Conclusion: This book is overloaded with exploding positions!

Keep it Simple: 1.e4: A Solid and Straightforward Chess Opening Repertoire for White
by Christof Sielecki

New in Chess
365  pages
Price € 29.95
ISBN: 978-90-5691-805-7

The IM from Germany Christof Sielecki providers the local club player and ambitious chess student with a solid but reliable and easy to
learn  repertoire line against all possible black moves after 1.e4.
Christof Sielecki goes for lines as the French Exchange, Scotch Four Knights, Sicilian with the Rossolimo,Caro-Kann with 2.Nc3,Pirc etc.
All material is well explained with instructive text and the reader is highly invited to study the 30 included model games.
Conclusion:Solid and easy to learn!

Test Your Chess Skills: Practical Decisions in Critical Moments
by Logman Guliev & Sarhan Gulie

New in Chess
206  pages
Price € 19.95
ISBN: 978-90-5691-809-5

The two Guliev brothers have managed to create a wonderful written exercise book where every puzzle is a short adventure, packed in readable explanations.
Like muscles every skill needs trainings and these 224 exercises are divided in tactical blows, strategic manoeuvres, opening traps and more.
Interesting to mention that both authors have accompanied the examples with proverbs and quotations from well known personalities, in a bid to underline the fact that chess and philosophy have much in common.
A fine exercise comes from Sarhan himself and for the readers I will give all moves:
Tunik,Gennady (2477) - Guliev,Sarhan (2481) [E92]
Moscow Aeroflot op-B Moscow (5), 18.02.2005
1.d4 Nf6 2.c4 g6 3.Nc3 Bg7 4.e4 d6 5.Nf3 0-0 6.Be2 e5 7.Be3 Ng4 8.Bg5 f6 9.Bh4 Nc6 10.d5 Ne7 11.Nd2 h5 12.h3 Nh6 13.g4 g5 14.Bg3 h4 15.Bh2 c5 16.a3 Ng6 17.f3 Nf4 18.Bf1 b6 19.Bg1 a6 20.Rh2 Bd7 21.b4 Qc7 22.Nb3 Nf7 23.Rb1 Rfc8 24.Rc2 Bf8 25.Qd2 Be7 26.Be3 Rcb8 27.Nd1 Nh8 28.Kf2 Nhg6 29.Kg1 Kg7 30.Bf2 Kh7 31.Ne3 Bf8 32.Nc1 Ra7 33.Kh2 Be8 34.Nf5 Rab7 35.Na2 Bd7 36.Nc3 Kg8 37.Rcb2 Nh8 38.a4 Nf7 39.Rb3 Bc8 40.R1b2 Bd7 41.Qd1 Nd8 42.Qb1 Bc8 43.a5 bxa5 44.bxc5 dxc5 45.Rxb7 Rxb7 46.Rxb7 Qxb7 47.Qxb7 Nxb7 48.Be3 Bd7 49.Bc1 a4 50.Kg1 Na5 51.Kf2 Nb3 52.Bxf4 exf4 53.Bd3 Kf7 54.Bc2 Na5 55.Nxa4 Nxc4 56.Nc3 Nb6 57.e5 Bxf5 58.gxf5 c4 59.Ne4 Nxd5 60.exf6 Bb4 61.Ba4 Nxf6 62.Nxg5+ Ke7 63.Ke2 Nd5 64.Ne4 Nc3+ 65.Nxc3 Bxc3 66.Kd1 Kd6 67.Kc2 Bf6 0-1,sometimes an endgame with opposite coloured bishops is the easiest way to win!
Conclusion: Very original written and highly recommended!

Clinch it!: How to Convert an Advantage into a Win in Chess
by Cyrus Lakdawala

New in Chess
252  pages
Price € 29.95
ISBN: 978-90-5691-801-9

The well known master and former American Open Champion Cyrus Lakdawala explains for the more ambitious club player how to convert an advantage into a win in chess.
This all is well explained at the hand of modern and classic examples, sometimes the author even goes back to Goachino Greco 1600-1634 who was the first child prodigy in chess history and became the symbol of an entire age.
Lakdawala writes:I studied Greco’s games and realized that he was like a 2300 rated master who walked into the Starbucks where all the other players are in the range of 600-800.
He dominated both strategically and tactically,and nobody was a match for him in his era.
First of all,Greco understood a key element that all other players of his time were oblivious to: a development lead matters.
But there is more as 5 heavy loaded chapters on Exploiting a development lead, Exploiting the attack, Defence and counterattack ,Accumulating advantages and at last Converting favourable imbalances.
These five chapters  are overloaded with instructive wins but one of my favourite games in this book is: Perez Perez,Francisco Jose - Alekhine,Alexander [C25]
Alekhine blitz Madrid, 1943
1.e4 e5 2.Nc3 Nc6 3.f4 exf4 4.Nf3 g5 5.d4 g4 6.Bc4 gxf3 7.Bxf4 fxg2 8.Bxf7+ Kxf7 9.Qh5+ Kg7 10.Rg1 Nge7 11.Bh6+ Kg8 12.Rxg2+ 1-0.
By the way this blitz tournament was won by Paul Keres and Perez become second.
As Lakdawala explains correct is GM Neil McDonalds suggestion from his book
on the King’s Gambit,7…f2!
This move gains a precious tempo and subverts the attack intent:8.Kxf2 Bg7 9.e5 Nge7 10.Qh5 0-0 11.Bd3 Ng6 and white does not have enough for the piece.
Conclusion: A master piece of explanation!

Better Thinking, Better Chess: How a Grandmaster Finds his Moves
by Joel Benjamin

New in Chess
223  pages
Price € 29.95
ISBN: 978-90-5691-807-1

Better Thinking, Better Chess is a ambitious project from Grandmaster Joel Benjamin based on the subject of how a grandmaster finds and plays his moves, this all is pleasantly based on the own games of our grandmaster and his students, and that makes a book like this very special.
Maybe it is better to say highly instructive!
All material is packed in ten readable chapters as Openings, Endgames, Tactics, Grandmaster calculation and analysis, Problems in calculation and cognitive approach, Material and initiative, Winning the won game, Swindling, Words of wisdom and Challenges.
I enjoyed the honest comments from Joel Benjamin as I would like to show you after the moves: Grabliauskas – Benjamin New York 2000,1.d4 Nf6 2.c4 Nc6 3.Nf3 e6 4.g3 d5 5.Bg2 dxc4 6.Qa4+ Bb4+7.Bd2 Nd5 8.Qb5 Uh-oh,I’m out of my preparation already!
At the time there was a popular variation stemming from 8.Bxb4 Ndxb4 9.a3 b5 10.Qxb5 Nc2+ etc.I was prepared to grab this rook in the corner but new nothing about the sidelines!
It’s a good lesson:when you prepare something in a new opening,don’t focus to much on the main line that you will be at a loss if your opponent avoids it.
Further I did enjoy very much the game,Deep Blue – Garry Kasparov,New York 1997,for the insiders Joel Benjamin was the chess consultant for the Deep Blue computer and here the reader shall find some interesting background information on this game plus some wise words!As Don’t resign out of frustration and disappointment with your situation, and don’t assume your opponent has calculated everything correctly.
Conclusion:This book will help you to become a master in chess!

Chess Pattern Recognition for Beginners: The Fundamental Guide to Spotting Key Moves in the Middlegame
by Arthur van de Oudeweetering
New in Chess
240  pages
Price € 24.95
ISBN: 978-90-5691-803-3

The Dutch IM Arthur van de Oudeweetering provides the beginning chess student with a collection  chess patterns well packed into 25 readable sessions.
The secret of good chess play is recognizing chess patterns, as the reader will learn in this book once we see a certain familiar pattern, our brains can make a mental link with the current position.
And strategy knowledge is directly linked to what we call intuition, which is a positional feeling that can be developed by practising.
The reader will recognize after a little way thematic moves, flank attacks, brake throws, open lines and more!
A fine example of the ace of space is: Shirov,Alexei (2723) - Sokolov,Ivan (2688) [C92]
Reykjavik Hrokurinn Reykjavik (9), 27.02.2003
1.e4 e5 2.Nf3 Nc6 3.Bb5 a6 4.Ba4 Nf6 5.0-0 Be7 6.Re1 b5 7.Bb3 d6 8.c3 0-0 9.h3 Bb7 10.d4 Re8 11.Ng5 Rf8 12.Nf3 Re8 13.a4 h6 14.Nbd2 Bf8 15.Bc2 Qd7 16.b3 b4 17.d5 Ne7 18.c4 c5 19.Nf1 Kh8 20.N3h2 Ng6 21.Ne3 Rad8 22.Nf5 Bc8 23.Qf3 Nh7 24.Bd2 Ne7 25.h4 Ng8 26.g4 g6 27.Ne3 Bg7 28.Kh1 Ne7 29.Rg1 Rg8 30.Rg2 Rdf8 31.Rag1 Qd8 32.Nhf1 a5 33.Rh2 f6 34.Ng3 Rf7 35.Kg2 f5 36.gxf5 gxf5 37.exf5 e4 38.Bxe4 Be5 39.Kf1 Nf6 40.Bd3 Rfg7 41.Rhg2 Qe8 42.Ne4 Rxg2 43.Rxg2 Rxg2 44.Kxg2 Nh5 45.Kf1 Qf7 46.Ng4 Nxf5 47.Nxe5 dxe5 48.Ke1 Qg6 49.Nxc5 Kg8 50.Be3 Qg1+ 51.Kd2 Nxe3 52.Qxe3 Qa1 53.Bc2 Qb2 54.Qd3 Nf4 55.Qe3 Bf5 56.Ne4 Kf8 57.f3 h5 58.d6 Bxe4 59.Qxe4 Ke8 60.Kd1 Qa1+ 61.Bb1 Qc3 62.Qa8+ Kf7 63.Qa7+ Kg8 64.Qh7+ Kf8 65.Qf5+ Kg7 66.Qe4 Qxb3+ 67.Bc2 Qc3 68.d7 Qa1+ 69.Bb1 Qxa4+ 70.Ke1 1-0.
Included throw this book are several exercises to test your pattern skills!
Conclusion: The perfect companion of every chess student!      

                                                                                                           Chess DVD's                           

Mega Database 2019
Price Euro 179.90
System requirements: Pentium PC, 2 GB RAM, Windows 10, 8 or 7 and Fritz 13, 14, 15, 16 or ChessBase 15, 14, 13 or 12 and DVD drive

The new Mega Database comes with over 7.6 million games, where over 72,000 of these games cover excellent annotations, often analysed by the best
players in the world!
The latest games of this DVD come from the middle of October 2018,and that is more than perfect to keep abreast of latest developments!
The player base has also be extended with about 430000 names doing this the photo database was extended to a small 38500 pictures!
Incl. Online Mega-Update 2019: With ChessBase 14, 13 or 12 you can download games for Mega 2019 for the whole year, a total of approximately 250,000 games!
That means your Mega 2019 will remain up to date from January to December next year!
Conclusion: There is simple no better buy!

Fritz Powerbook 2019
Price Euro 69.90
System requirements:Pentium PC, 32 MB RAM, Windows 10, 8 or 7 and Fritz 13, 14, 15 or ChessBase15, 14, 13 or 12 and DVD drive.

This new PowerBook 2019 holds over 25 million openings positions!
These 25 million openings positions is an unbelievable amount of chess information, which can not be hold in any printed way.
Deep Blue only had a openings book from over 4,000 positions and 700,000 grandmaster games!
It's hold a  Hugh amount of extra chess information as all the moves that where played in the position, plus rating, success and performance.
Included is a smaller but super strong grandmaster Openings book.{Good for around two million positions!}
Conclusion: This Powerbook 2019 will change  your Fritz or ChessBase in to a super killing machine!

Extreme Calculation Training
by  Robert Ris

Price Euro 29.90
Minimum: Dual Core, 2 GB RAM, Windows 7 or 8.1, DirectX11, graphics card with 256 MB RAM, DVD-ROM drive, Windows Media Player 9, ChessBase 14/Fritz 16 or included Reader and internet access for program activation. Recommended: PC Intel i5 (Quadcore), 4 GB RAM, Windows 10, DirectX11, graphics card with 512 MB RAM or more, 100% DirectX10-compatible sound card, Windows Media Player 11, DVD-ROM drive and internet access for program activation.

After his impressive made first Volume on Calculation Training, the master of explanation IM Robert Ris continues with his new Volume 2 with a large amount of tactic aspects as: Intermediate Moves, Quiet Moves, Sacrifices on Empty Squares, Mating Patterns, Ignoring Opponents Threat, Calculation in Defence, Method of Comparison etc.
This all is highly instructive packed with a lot of practical advises!
All packed in three heavy downloads and good for 9 hours of highly instructive video entertainment.
Included is a database with extra examples to improve your tactical skills!
Conclusion: This DVD or download is overloaded with highly instructive material!   

ChessBase 15
Price Euro 289.90

Minimum: Dual-Core, 4 GB RAM, Windows 7, DirectX11 graphics card with 256 MB RAM, DVD-ROM drive, Windows Media Player 9 and Internet access to activate the program, ChessBase Cloud and updates. Recommended: PC Intel Core i7, 2.8 GHz, 16 GB RAM, Windows 10, DirectX11 graphics card (or compatible) with 512 MB RAM or more, 512 GB SSD, Windows Media Player, Adobe Flash Player (Live coverage), DVD ROM drive, Full HD Monitor and Internet access to activate the program, ChessBase Cloud and updates

There is nothing so enjoyable as playing with the database program ChessBase
special this new release number 15 with the following novelties and  improvements:
Instant Analysis”: Any unannotated game is analysed almost without delay immediately on loading (optional). Blunders and tactical motifs are recognised. An evaluation profile is created.
Replay Training”: Playing through a game with the notation hidden and automatic training questions with tips for each individual move. In addition, a closing award of points scored.
Improved search mask with tactical motifs (skewer, fork, discovered attack, etc.) and examples for manoeuvres and material distribution.
Extended reference search for openings shows increase/- decrease in popularity and typical recurring endgames.
Improved search booster delivers more precise results for positions and material. Completely new search booster for patterns and plans.
Game analysis with tactical motifs and recognition of tactics. Crisp new 3D boards thanks to raytracing technology.
But there is so much more as for example:
Theoretical Novelty”; merge games on the fly into an opening tree; generate a dossier containing all available information on a specific player from the database; generate a comprehensive openings report with main and critical lines, plans and most important games; single click publication of games on the Internet; print games in superb quality with diagrams and multiple columns; automatic update of your local reference database with the weekly installments of games (one year); access to the ChessBase online database with over eight million games*; mobile access with the ChessBase Account*.
Included is a PDF with first steps with ChessBase15!
Conclusion:ChessBase 15 is overloaded with  novelties!

ChessBase Magazine extra issue 186
November  2018
Videos by Adrian Mikhalchishin, Yannick Pelletier and Georgios Souleidis

ISSN 1432-8992
Euro 12.99
System requirements:
Minimum: Pentium III 1 GHz, 1 GB RAM, Windows Vista, XP (Service Pack 3), DirectX9 graphic card with 256 MB RAM, DVD-ROM drive, Windows Media Player 9, ChessBase 12/Fritz 13 or included Reader and internet connection for program activation. Recommended: PC Intel Core i7, 2.8 GHz, 4 GB RAM, Windows 8.1 or Windows 10, DirectX10 graphic card (or compatible) with 512 MB RAM or better, 100% DirectX10 compatible sound card, Windows Media Player 11, DVD-ROM drive and internet connection for program activation.

Again a superb filled CD with over 47000 entries and all played between 1/8 and 24/10 of this year.
For a little amount your support with all the latest played games and there is truly no better way to keep abreast of latest developments!
A nice example of latest play is:
Villanueva,Mario Nicolas (2481) - Pichot,Alan (2564) [C89]
ARG-ch 93rd Villa Martelli (1), 17.07.2018
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 9.exd5 Nxd5 10.Nxe5 Nxe5 11.Rxe5 c6 12.d4 Bd6 13.Re1 Qh4 14.g3 Qh3 15.Qf3 Bg4 16.Qg2 Qh5 17.Be3 a5 18.Nd2 a4 19.Bxd5 cxd5 20.Bf4 Bh3 21.Qf3 Qxf3 22.Nxf3 Bxf4 23.gxf4 a3 24.b4 Ra6 25.Ne5 Rc8 26.Re3 Bf5 27.Rc1 Rh6 28.f3 Rh4 29.Nc6 Rxf4 30.Ne7+ Kf8 31.Nxc8 Bxc8 32.Rce1 Be6 33.Rb1 Rf6 34.Rb3 Rg6+ 35.Kf2 Rh6 36.Kg3 Rg6+ 37.Kf2 Rh6 38.Kg2 Rg6+ 39.Kf1 Rh6 40.Re2 Bh3+ 41.Ke1 Ra6 42.Re3 g5 43.f4 Bf5 44.fxg5 Bc2 45.c4 Bxb3 46.cxb5 Ra4 47.Rxb3 Ke7 48.Kd2 Kd7 49.Kc2 Kd6 50.Rb1 1-0
And not to forget the excellent video files from ChessBase movie stars as the impressive made one from Adrian Mikhalchishin on the Sicilian Najdorf with the move order
1. e4 c5 2. Nf3 d6 3. d4 cxd4 4. Qxd4 Nc6 5. Bb5 Bd7 where White continues with 6.Qd3 and sets up a kind of Maroczy
Conclusion: This is impressive!