Latest book reviews of 1 August

Wilhelminalaan 33 


The Netherlands.
John Elburg

Chess Books

Chess self-improvement by Zenon Franco
Gambit Publications Ltd
240 pages
Price $28.95
ISBN 1-904600-29-8

The material that is covered in this book represents the monthly articles that the  Paraguay Grandmaster Zenon Franco has written for a quarter of century in Spanish language chess magazines as the famous Argentinean magazine El Rey.
The main idea of these games in this book is to play the role of teacher at home by searching and selecting previous moves,
for instance if you find a move as: 1.e4 e6 2.d4 d5 3.Nc3 Bb4 4.e5 c5 5.a3 Bxc3+ 6.bxc3 Ne7 7.Nf3 Qa5 8.Qd2 Bd7 9.Rb1 Bc6 10.Bd3 Nd7 11.0-0 c4 12.Be2 h6 13.h4 0-0-0 14.Bd1 Nf5! you can get up to four points!
Timman played in Reykjavik against Short  14...f5?!  and lost on move 39.
All 50 games of this book are divided in three major sections as positional play {27 games}, tactics (17 games} and endgames (6 games}
Euwe already stared in the last century with this idea of self tests and points but did not analyse in the way as Zenon Franco does in this book for example in the famous game between Max Euwe and  Isaak Boleslavsky of  Zurich Candidates from 1953 is good for five impressive analysed a4 pages of this heavy loaded chess book!
David Bronstein analysed this game in his famous 1953 tournament book with only one page!
There are some classics in this book but the major part of these games are truly modern and Zenon Franco is a  patent teacher  and leads you as no other  throw these 50 highly instructive games!
Conclusion: A book with great learning skills!

Schach training by Alexander Koblenz
Der weg zum erfolg
Joachim Beyer Verlag
285 pages
Price € 19.80
ISBN 3-88805-529-6

Alexander Koblenz famous trainings book is reedited by the German chess master Vladimir Budde.
The whole work is based on a course from sixteen chapters based on sixteen hour course of your pressures time where the reader is invited in all kind of  middle game strategies, combinations and endgame skills all based on complete and well analysed games by  the well known chess teacher Alexander Koblenz.
Koblenz was a man of great talents and was the personal trainer and close friend from the great chess genius Mikhail Tal.
The updated  material from Budde is certainly no less than the original from Koblenz for example the endgame position from Kasparov – Karpov,Lyon 1990 is excellent analysed with nearly eight pages of text.
Included throw this book are all kind of instructive exercises to test your strategy and endgame skills.
The book is made in hardcover and is well reedited by the Joachim Beyer Verlag but some knowledge of the German language is necessarily if you want to take up this sixteen hour course book!
Conclusion: A very instructive course book!

Laskers Lehrbuch des Schachspiels by Emanuel Lasker
Joachim Beyer Verlag
254 pages
Price € 19.80
ISBN 3-88805-477-X

A new update from Laskers famous Manuel of chess that was first printed in 1925 and offers the reader a complete course to master ship in around  200 hours of study but of course that was back in the nineteen twenties of the last century!
Meanwhile many things as chess openings have changed but this learning book from Lasker still belongs to one of the
best learning books in chess.
All material is updated by Annette Borik but it still holds the atmosphere from Lasker who had a incredible talent as a resourceful fighter in chess.Lasker 1868 – 1941 belongs to one of the most famous chess players of all time and did hold the World championship title in chess for 27 years.
The material in this book is divided in six highly instructive parts where I would like to mention his famous “Ästhetisch Wirksame im Schachspiel” but the second second part of this book chess openings still stands after 80 years, but above all it are the original  annotations from Lasker  sometimes he is a poet other times a great philosopher.
Instructive are  the large amount of complete games filled on with the logical annotations from the great Lasker who explained chess as no other ever did before.
Conclusion: A classic best seller!

Garri Kasparow Meine grossen Vorkämpfer 4
Wassili Smyslow & Michail Tal
Edition Olms

244 pages
Price €29.95

This German translation of Kasparov’s on his great predecessors needs nearly introduction but the German edition from Olms has some slight differences as the English edition
First Olms does not overload the reader and  prefers to cover in every part two great chess players and in this part it are Vasily Smyslov and the most remarkable player of all time the great Mikhail Tal who was a born attacking genius.
He could launch attacks in no time and created unbelievable complications on the board.
Interestingly enough the Olms editions have some more extra’s as a CD with all the games from Smyslow & Tal and that are around a small 5271 ones plus some extra photo’s van Kasparov, Smyslow and Tal!
All together there are exactly 297 complete games in this hard cover Olms book where it is very instructive to follow the annotations from one of the greatest chess players of all time.
Tal is the only player I can remember who did not calculate lengthy variations: he  simply saw through them! Hundreds of fantastic combinations were constantly whirling around in his brain, and his imagination knew no bounds.
All fans from Tal certainly shall enjoy game 121 where Tal plays against the so called Poisoned pawn variations one of the sharpest lines in the Sicilian defence.{Good for nearly six pages of text!}
Conclusion: This book will certainly become a must buy!

The Sicilian Bb5 by Neil McDonald
Batsford Ltd London

211 pages
Price $ 21.95
ISBN 0-7134-8980-4

In this book you shall find a interesting coverage from two openings and well  the Rossolimo 1.e4 c5 2.Nf3 Nc6 3.Bb5 & 1.e4 c5 2.Nf3d6 3.Bb5+ the so called Moscow variation where black throws down the gauntlet with 3. Nd7.
The whole material in this book from GM Neil McDonald is well explained by the author with a large amount of text based on a collection of a small 40 but well analysed model games.
Neil McDonald prefers to provide the reader with a good understanding of the Rossolimo above memorizing long variations but there is a important chapter in this book What’s hot where the author goes throw the latest theoretical devolvement of the Rossolimo and Moscow variation.
Interesting enough the great Rossolimo always went for a direct and combinations but it is better to play the Rossolimo as Fischer once did with his fabulous strategical understanding.
Be aware black has difficulties to get a absolute equality in this opening!
Conclusion: A excellent book to understand 3.Bb5!

The Queens’s bishop attack by James Plaskett
Batsford Ltd London

223 pages
Price $ 22.95
ISBN 0-7134-8970-7

In this latest revealed openings book the English GM James Plaskett digs in the pseudo Trompowsky with 1.d4 d5 2.Bg5!?
According to the database from James Plaskett first played by a chess player called Preston Ware of the 1880 5t US Congress of New York, but it was brought in to daylight by the future world champion Alexander Alekhine against Fritz Englund at Scheveningen 1913.
But the pseudo Tromp has made by the year many victims as for example Euwe who lost in ten moves from the Dutch Gerad Oskam in the Dutch championship of 1919; 1.d4 d5 2.Bg5 Bf5 3.Nf3 Nf6 4.e3 e6 5.c4 h6 6.Bxf6 Qxf6 7.Qb3 Nc6 8.Qxb7 Kd7 9.cxd5 exd5 10.Bb5 Rb8 11.Bxc6+ Qxc6 12.Ne5+ 1-0.
That time Max Euwe was regarded as one of the most promising Dutch talents.
Indeed the pseudo Tromp is a excellent choice to take your opponent out of his familiar territory,but to be honest this book is no forced win but you get from Plaskett in these 223 pages a very exciting of line openings book where black is forced to think.
The whole material is quite compressive and I found over the 50 excellent explained  model games where the author is not afraid to show some latest secrets as for example in his chapter ‘What is hot’.
Included are instructive chapters with material as tricks and traps, test positions  and before the fight where the reader is invited in some unexplored  thoughts..
Conclusion: A very exciting made openings book!

Chess CD's

Budapest Gambit by Dmitrij Oleinikov
Price € 24.99
System requirements: Pentium, 32 MB RAM, Windows 98 SE/2000/Me/XP

This latest ChessBase training’s CD is a update of Oleinikov’s first Budapest opening’s CD that saw first day light in 1999.
Did the 1999 edition do with only 4088 games this second edition has over 13214 entries where a 110 of them carry excellent annotations.
Specially prepared is also a instructor file from around 210 entries where I found 13 database text files and a small 197 extra model games.
Besides the above mentioned files there is also a strategy and a tactic  file from 20 entries each and not to forget a Budapest openings book file from 17.4 MB!
Oleinikov did awful his best to dig up every possible played Budapest gambit games where I would like to mention the large amount of entries in the Fajarowicz gambit with 1.d4 Nf6 2.c4 e5 3.dxe5 Ne4!?
The Budapest Gambit stays a offbeat opening but has a great surprise value and can leave opponents confused as we saw in Alexei Shirov’s lates Fire on board book.
Conclusion: An excellent update!

Test your chess by Henrik Schlossner
Price € 24.99
ISBN 3-937549-53-6
System requirements: Pentium, 32 MB RAM, Windows 98 SE/2000/Me/XP

This exciting made test your chess CD comes from the German author Henrik Schlossner who was good for the exciting CD from Tal and his two technique  CD’s.
Found on this CD exactly 555 trainings exercise all presented with multiple-choice questions
all divided into six sections.
On this CD you must not only consider how to win from a given position but also whether and why you can win.
Fun are the so called stress exercises where you have 30 seconds to make your mind! And that is not so easy as it looks.
Conclusion: A very exciting exercise CD!

ChessBase magazine issue 106

ISSN 1432-8992
Price Euro 19,90 per issue
Annual subscription  costs Euro 99,70

The main file on this ChessBase magazine is good for exactly 1640 entries, of where three of them are text reports and 506 of these entries are games with excellent annotations.
But first to the theory files these are from: GM Zoltan Ribli who deals with the English with A14: 1.Nf3 d5 2.c4 e6 3.g3 Nf6 4.Bg2 Be7 5.0-0 0-0 6.b3 c5 7.Bb2 Nc6 8.e3 d4 9.exd4 cxd4 10.Re1 Ne8 11.d3 f6 12.Na3 e5 13.Nc2 and Nc7, GM Evgeny Postny handles the Tromp A45: 1.d4 Nf6 2.Bg5 Ne4 3.Bf4 c5 4.f3 Nf6 5.d5 Qb6 6.Bc1 e6 7.c4,Jerzy Konikowski concentrates on the modern Benoni A69, 1.c4 g6 2.Nc3 Bg7 3.d4 d6 4.e4 Nf6 5.f4 c5 6.d5 e6 7.Nf3 0-0 8.Be2 exd5 9.cxd5 Re8 10.e5 dxe5 11.fxe5 Ng4 12.Bg5 f6, GM Eric Prie digs in the Scandinavian B01,GM Sergey Erenburg goes for a exciting line in the modern defence with
B06, 1.e4 d6 2.d4 g6 3.Nc3 Bg7 4.f4 c6 5.Nf3 Bg4 6.Be3 Qb6 7.Qd2 Bxf3 8.gxf3 that reminds me at Suttles and the good old  seventies. GM Dorian Rogozenko goes for the Sicilian Alapin B22 and the move order:
1.e4 c5 2.c3 e6 3.d4 d5 4.exd5 Qxd5 5.Nf3 Nf6 6.Be3 cxd4 7.cxd4 Bb4+,GM Alexander Finkel from Israel looks at the dangerous 6,Be3 of the McCutcheon.The famous gambit expert Peter Leisebein looks at the Elephant gambit C40 and at last a detailed study GM Boris Avrukh on the Anti-Moscow variation of the Semi Slav!
Not less interesting are the other contributions as Strategy and hanging pawns from GM Peter Wells,Tactics from GM Valery Atlas,History from Johannes Fischer who writes about the great Rudolf Spielmann.
But one of the best contributions of this ChessBase magazine goes to GM Karsten Müller and his selected 32 endgames.
Personal I think that Karsten Müller has written one of the ever best endgame books and well Secrets of pawn endings by Karsten Múller & Frank Lamprecht,Everyman Chess 2000.
The 449 MB Avi files go to Linares and the farewell of Garry Kasparov!
Included is the game Topalov – Kasparov!
Conclusion: A must for every ambitious chess player!
Included is a booklet from 27 pages.

ChessBase Magazine extra issue 106
Juli 2006

ISSN 1432-8992
Euro 12.99

ChessBase magazine issue 106 comes with a impressive collection of  16145 games all played between Jinan Torch Cup and the famous Geller memorial.
The AVI files 333 MB and BMP files 34 are good for a very interesting text report from Andre Schulz about a very special chess exhibition that is running  in Hamburg.
There are interviews with Hans Krieger from the Hamburg chess club, Franz Josef Lang a chess collector, Isaak Linder, Dr. Thomas Thomsen,and a lot of interesting photo’s but unfortunately the text report is only available in the German language!
By the way there is a interesting catalogue from the exhibition for the special price from € 29.90 later it will become € 69.90!
Conclusion: Well loaded CD!      

Game Service 2005
The first game report from July came with exactly 2003 games:
2005, Alushta (Ukraine), It (cat.1)                             62
2005, Americana (Brazil), Ch Paulista                           43
2005, Bad Homburg (Germany), Ch Europe (seniors)               243
2005, Kranj (Slovenia), It (open)                              205
2005, Lorca (Spain), Memorial Narciso Yepes (open)             130
2005, Madrid (Spain), It "5 Torneo Pueblo Nuevo"                35
2005, Marseilles (France), It (open)                           114
2005, Marseilles (France), It (w)                               45
2005, Mostoles (Spain), It                                      30
2005, Odessa (Ukraine), Memorial E.Geller                       45
2005, Pattaya (Thailand), Ch Asia (juniors) (under 16)         126
2005, Pattaya (Thailand), Ch Asia (juniors) (under 16) (g)      63
2005, Pattaya (Thailand), Ch Asia (juniors) (under 18)          72
2005, Pattaya (Thailand), Ch Asia (juniors) (under 18) (g)      54
2005, Pinamar (Argentina), It (cat.3)                           45
2005, Salou (Spain), It (open)                                 120
2005, San Fernando (Spain), It (open)                           95
2005, Shenzheng (China), Match "China-France"                   32
2005, Warsaw (Poland), Ch Europe                               421
2005, Warsaw (Poland), Ch Europe (play-off)                     22
2005, Warsaw (Poland), Ch Europe (qualification)                31

Interesting to mention are the 62 Ukraine games!
Conclusion: Very impressive!

Chess Magazine's

ChessMail issue 5/2005

Chess Mail Limited, 26 Coolamber Park
Dublin 16 Ireland
Basic Subscription 42 Euros.
{For eight issues.}

Once a year Tim Harding transfers his ChessMail magazine into a real gambit magazine and see what I found: A new idea in the Schliemann: 1.e4 e5 2.Nf3 Nc6 3.Bb5 f5 4.Nc3 fxe4 5.Nxe4 Nf6 6.Nxf6+ Qxf6 7.Qe2 Be7 8.Bxc6 bxc6 instead of 8…dxc6 that we saw  in the game Glek – Yandemirov USSR 1985 {Good for 3 pages of text}
The real Kieseritzkij gambit by George Walker {6 pages!} Gambit game miscellany with the Tait line; 1.e4 e6 2.d4 d5 3.Nc3 Bb4 4.e5 c5 5.a3 Bxc3+ 6.bxc3 Ne7 7.Qg4 Qc7 8.Qxg7 Rg8 9.Qxh7 cxd4 10.Ne2 Nbc6 11.f4 Bd7 12.Qd3 dxc3 13.Rb1 0-0-0 14.h4!? etc.
More Marshall magic {8 pages!}Nearly all material comes from the ICCF thematic finale but I would also take some special interest in the game Neuer – Castillo with the characteristic Slovenian Pawn Push!  {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.Be3 Bg4 16.Qd3 f5 17.f4 g5 18.Qf1 Qh5 19.Nd2 h6!?}
But there is more as the article from CC GM Marc Geenen In the footsteps of a gambit lover and well the chess giant from Sweden Kjell Krantz! And the extraordinary story from Tim Harding on Dr.M.G. Sturm.
Conclusion: A super gambit issue!

British Chess Magazine No.7
Volume 125
July  2005
Price: £3.25

Starting with Mtel Masters the first super tournament of the post-Kasparov era which was a tremendous success for home player Veselin Topalov {15 pages if I include the photo’s}
New chess centres in Ukraine, Mikhail Golubev takes a look at  Ivanchuk & Ponomariov’s earliest steps in chess and revails the details of  a secret training match he played against the young FIDE ex-world champion.{All six games of there 1996 match are currently avaible as a download file at the BCM web site
But there is more Reviews and new books, The Odessa file, Interview with Sergey Karyakin, Obituary Vladimir Savon, News in Brief, Honour deferred, Quotes and queries, endgame studies etc.
Conclusion: Well filled!