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Member since Apr-18-09 · Last seen Oct-07-19

Moderators: <parisattack>, <Boomie>, <hms123> and <JFQ>



To answer any and all questions you may have about CHESS BOOKS.

The answers will be provided by the people who visit here. We welcome book reviews, book links, and conversation about your favorite books.


<Book Lists and Book Links>

1.<Chess Literature Forum> hosted by <Paris Attack> parisattack chessforum

2. Compiled by <Artar1>: The World vs G Timmerman, 2007 (kibitz #44183)

3. Compiled by <Random Visitor>: #############################


The main day to day forum function here will be to offer a space for people to post specific questions about chess books= and to provide a space for the many experts at <> to answer those questions.

If you are particularly interested and knowledgeable about a specific <chess book topic> we will be happy to post a link to your <Profile/forum>.

Here are some <real chess book questions> from recent <> posts- these are exactly the kind of question we wish to provide answers for. The answers, of course, will come from other <> members who happen to know about these topics.

<Has <<<anyone>>> has anyone read "My Best Games of Chess" by Vishy Anand? Is it good? Are there nice stories about his life or early career?>

<Can <<<anyone>>> recommend a book how to deal with Caro-Kann??>

<Can <<<anyone>>> recommend a good book on the Semi Slav??>

<Has <<<anyone>>> here had the chance to read the new edition of fischer's book? i've always wanted to read it, but i hear very scary stories about editorial modifications?>

<Can <<<anyone>>> recommend a book on the KID for an 1800ish player with some knowledge of the ideas in the KID but not a lot of knowledge regarding specific lines??>

All of these questions were posted recently somewhere at <>. The problem is that some were posted at game forums, some at the <Kibitzer's Cafe>, some at <player forums>, and so on. That means that the answers are scattered all over the place. With your help, we can make it easier for everyone to gain easy access to the wealth of information about <CHESS BOOKS> that exists at this site.



This outstanding resource takes you to hundreds of games collections from famous books such as <Mikhail Tal's> "My Life and Games," <Bobby Fischer's> "My 60 Memorable Games," and many, many, many more:

Game Collection: The Chess Book Companion (a meta-collection)



We need your help in keeping this forum active, useful, and on-topic. If you spot a post elsewhere on the site that should be re-posted here, please feel free to do so.

<jessicafischerqueen> and <hms123> will actively moderate this forum.

We will periodically provide summaries by area and will memorialize those links in the header for easy access to all.

We will also post regularly in the forum to keep things active and friendly.

Please give us your suggestions about new topics to post in the <ChessBookForum> Proifle, and give us any good links to <Chess Book Links> you may know about.

If you have any suggestions at all on how this forum could be even more helpful, please feel free to let us know. Full Member

   ChessBookForum has kibitzed 274 times to chessgames   [more...]
   Oct-07-19 jessicafischerqueen chessforum (replies)
ChessBookForum: -> My name is Talky Teema and you better be nice to me.
   Dec-12-15 ChessBookForum chessforum (replies)
ChessBookForum: <parisattack> Good news! <Dan> put us as the second item on the "What's New" list on the front page. I added your name to our forum, and also Boomie's, which was missing. That's because we haven't edited the dang thing since <Howard> shelled out the first ...
   Dec-12-15 chessforum (replies)
ChessBookForum: Thanks so much from all of us! <What's New On December 10th, 2015, Chessgames turned 14 years old! Help us celebrate by participating in our annual Holiday Present Hunt, which will begin during the round 6 broadcast of the London Chess Classic. 64 prizes will be ...
   Jun-04-15 wordfunph chessforum (replies)
ChessBookForum: Brother <wordfunph> our forum is back and has been made permanent by the webmaster!
   Feb-21-11 Travis Bickle chessforum (replies)
   Feb-21-11 Penguincw chessforum (replies)
ChessBookForum: Hello <Penguin>. That better not be s picture of a "Penguin Burger". You don't want to get in trouble with Animal Rights Activists!
   Feb-21-11 Kibitzer's Café (replies)
ChessBookForum: Here are a few Chess History suggestions: 1. Al Horowitz <From Morphy to Fischer - a History of the World Chess Championship> This volume includes behind the scenes historical details about how every world championship match was ...
   Feb-21-11 kingscrusher chessforum (replies)
ChessBookForum: Hello <Tryfon> it's me- Jess. I've put on the ChessBookForum hat so as to kill two birds with one stone. Here are a few Chess History suggestions from my library: 1. Al Horowitz <From Morphy to Fischer - a History of the World Chess Championship> ...
   Feb-21-11 crawfb5 chessforum (replies)
ChessBookForum: Hello. Is this where I enter my moves for the <Battle of the Bahrains>?
   Oct-27-10 Domdaniel chessforum (replies)
(replies) indicates a reply to the comment.


Kibitzer's Corner
< Earlier Kibitzing  · PAGE 15 OF 74 ·  Later Kibitzing>
Jun-02-09  blacksburg: i don't understand why so many people have a problem with descriptive notation. if you're smart enough to play chess, you're smart enough to read descriptive notation, it's really not that hard.
Jun-02-09  zanshin: <blacksburg> Speaking for myself, it's not that descriptive notation is hard, but it's irritating after you have gotten used to algebraic notation. Take P-QR3 as an example. Depending on which side you're playing, it's either a3 or a6. In algebraic notation, there is no need to mentally re-orient yourself to the chessboard depending on which side is on move.

<b> I am still going through Chernev's book (Most Instructive Games..) which is in descriptive notation. Instead of trying to follow the moves manually, I just find the game in <CG>'s database and load that into my engine, or follow the game using the Viewer.

Premium Chessgames Member
  Phony Benoni: I can still remember the Great Algebraic Wars, when algebraic was decried as a Communist plot because it eliminated the democratic equality of each player having his own name for the squares.

There were also the logical capturers. "What is this exd5 stuff? I'm capturing a pawn, not a square!"

If you want a real mind bender, try Spanish Descriptive. The Ruy Lopez starts off <1.P4R P4R 2.C3AR C3AD 3.AC5>.

Jun-03-09  blacksburg: in this week's interview with John Watson on ICC, Cyrus Lakdawala recommends two books - Silman's <How To Reassess Your Chess> and Elie Agur's <Bobby Fischer - His Approach To Chess>, and claims that these two books helped him to gain about 100 rating points over a single summer.

Silman's book is pretty good, but i've never heard of Agur's. anyone know anything about this book?

Jun-04-09  Open Defence: < blacksburg: i don't understand why so many people have a problem with descriptive notation. if you're smart enough to play chess, you're smart enough to read descriptive notation, it's really not that hard. > actually my early chess books were in descriptive notation so it took me a while to get used to algebraic, I could figure it out, but it kinda seemed a bit dumbed down to me.. in a musical context, its like a score versus a tablature....
Jun-04-09  technical draw: Just to add to PB's Spanish Descriptive here's a good one (from an actual game):

19. T2C-2AR (this is just ONE move!) (Rf2)

Jun-04-09  technical draw: Or 19.R2f2
Jun-05-09  zanshin: <its like a score versus a tablature>

Good comparison <OD>. And guess which one I prefer for my guitar?

Hey, I heard you were moving? If you choose to reply to this, please do so in my forum so as to keep this one on-topic. Thanks.

Jun-05-09  benjinathan: <z> good idea, although I do almost all my reading on the subway. Maybe I need a netbook.

I could learn <descriptive> (thanks <h>), but there are two issues: First, it is not just learning it, but becoming comfortable in it. That seems like a lot of work. The second issue then: is it worth it? I think that the only way to answer that is: are there enough books that are crtical to my improvement but which are also not available in algebraic.

Maybe that is a good Friday topic: what is the list of books that are critical to chess improvement but which are only available in descriptive notation. Any takers?

I note that one of the books that frightened me off was Fine's "ideas behind the chess opening". I see that it is available in algebraic.

Jun-05-09  hms123: <benjinathan> Here are three books that I own that as far as I can tell only exist in descriptive notation:

The Art of the Middle Game by Keres and Kotov

The Middle Game in Chess by Znosko-Borovsky

Pawn Power in Chess by Hans Kmoch

I think all three qualify as classics. <Pawn Power> is probably the most influential, but my personal favorite is the <Keres and Kotov> book.

Jun-07-09  myschkin: . . .

Freunde alter Schachbücher (German portal):

(by Urs Frischherz)

Jun-07-09  Boomie: Copied from User: blacksburg

<parisattack: Fischer - His approach to Chess by Agur.

For me perhaps the best book explaining Fischer's unique style.

Chapters on - Pawn Structure, Piece Placement, Timing, Strategy, Clarity, Straightforwardness. The short chapter on Clarity is worth the price of admission! I really didn't appreciate Fischer's play until I studied this tome.

276 vitamin-packed pages. I see a copy on eBay for $5.00 no bids and a couple others Buy-It-now for $12-$15.>

Jun-08-09  Boomie: <Chessbookforum>

In the bio there is a bogus link:


1. Compiled by <Artar1>: Chessgames Challenge: The World vs G Timmerman, 2007;

This just goes to a page of the game which has no Artar1 nor book references.

Jun-09-09  zanshin: <Boomie> I think it should really go here: The World vs G Timmerman, 2007
Jun-09-09  Boomie: <hms123 or jessicafischerqueen>

Please change the link in the bio to the one <zanshin> has given.

Thanks bookies

Jun-10-09  kellmano: All Englishmen should be aware that Ronan Bennett (author of Zugzwang) has an occasional article in G2 of The Guardian. I haven't worked out what days it's published yet, but he's teamed up with Danny King and it's a really good read. Much better than when Short taught that journalist to play.
Jun-10-09  benjinathan: For those non Englishmen here is alink:

I had to chuckle at this fromthe Guardian site:

"The following correction was printed in the Guardian's Corrections and clarifications column, Tuesday November 23, 2004 There is no Winawer variation in the Sicilian defence. The Winawer variation occurs in the French defence."

I am sure it is much better now!

Jun-10-09  benjinathan: Actually here is a more precise link:

Premium Chessgames Member
  ChessBookForum: Ok the <Artar link> has been repaired- thank you to <Boomie> and <Zanshin>!
Premium Chessgames Member
  ChessBookForum: Here is a simply outstanding review of one of the most mysterious books ever written-

By the expert in old chess books, <Paris Attack>- who has a personal collection of over 5000 chess books.

<parisattack: <<<Bobby Fischer Uncensored>>> by David and Alessandria De Lucia. Copyright 2009. Hardback embossed, Quarto (28 cm high), 394 pages. Background>

This is the third volume privately published by Mr. De Lucia.

His first book, highlighting some of the items in his fabulous chess book collection was Friends. It came out in 2003 for $99.00. I’ve seen it advertised for $1200. His second book (2008) was an expanded Friends which sold for $150 and $600 for a deluxe edition with vellum slip cover. Friends II is now selling for $350/$1200 in the aftermarket when you can find them.

The Fischer book is sold out at $350 and a secondary market volume has appeared at $450. Given the interest in things Fischer I suspect the aftermarket copies may go quite high within one or two years. Several collectors purchased multiple copies. At the moment there much confusion, speculation, mis-information about Fischer’s personal items and it will require some time for the dust to settle. Mr. De Lucia’s Foreword discusses this briefly. I understand an article on this book by a well-known chess historian is in preparation.

As with all of Mr. De Lucia’s books, no expense was spared in production. They are probably the most impressive chess books I have personally seen in forty years of collecting. Perhaps only the massive two volume set detailing the John White chess collection at the Cleveland library have so impressed me – though more for their monstrous size than for the production values which are actually quite poor (Xeroxed index cards copied to a page format).

Book Description

The book contains high-quality plates, most of them in color, many original black and white photographs, letters, game scores, manuscripts, personal identification, books, comics, magazines and other physical possessions.

General Content

The plates proceed somewhat chronologically, beginning with one of a childhood book, ‘Bobbie Had a Nickel’ by Frieda Friedman. Bobby’s name is neatly inscribed on the inside cover and ending with several photographs including from the 1962/63 US Championship and Bobby with Polgar, Lilienthal and his wife and a signed photograph of his mother, Regina. The book completes with a 50 page biographical listing of Mr. De Lucia’s Fischer collection.

Premium Chessgames Member
  ChessBookForum: <Paris Attack> review part two:

<parisattack>: As I mentioned on the Fischer blog there is something a bit morbid about viewing someone’s personal belongings; more so as they are deceased. But famous people must live in a different world. I am happy this material found themselves in ‘strong hands’ where it is safe and not to be strewn across eBay a piece at a time over months or years. That Mr. De Lucia has chosen to chronicle everything in this very fine volume is a great service to chess historians now and into the future. In truth I find some of the items of very little interest (the Italian porno comics, his anti-Jewish literature, the IDs). But some of them I find much more intriguing that I thought I might, especially the letters, manuscripts and photographs.

I spent quite a bit more time browsing the book than I originally intended. Together Fischer Uncensored does provide at least speculative insight into his persona.

(I should mention I met Fischer very briefly in 1971 when he played Larsen in the Candidates and borrowed some books from my collection. I found him happy, open, a bit gangly and awkward. He spoke only a few words. He did have a wonderful almost child-like smile.)

Of Interest

A series of photographs of Bobby eating on his bed while studying chess.

Bobby’s childhood accordion.

A small notebook of mathematical games.

His vocabulary speller from school as well as several pages of his schoolwork. The arithmetic looks done much neater than the English!

Two pages of all the participants, signed with birthdates from Zurich 1959.

Letter to Bernard Zuckerman at the time of Varna 1962.

Draft of Bobby Fischer Talks Chess.

Pages of manuscript from My Life in Chess – 52 Memorable Games

Photos of a street simul in Buenos Aires

The ‘warning letter’ from the Dept of the Treasury regarding playing Spassky in 1992.

A letter from Bobby’s girlfriend Zita to which he has annotated ‘Bitch’ on the cover.

A letter to Eugene Torre.

A letter to Miyoto Watai.

Long letter from Gligoric, 1994.

Photo of Bobby and Spassky, 1995 in good spirits.

Letter concerning a computer program using his name.

16 Pages from a 100 page manuscript by Fischer, ‘What You Can Expect From Baby Mutilators.”

Notes for his Baguio radio interview.

Several pages of personal identification items including passport.

I personally find the ‘early life’ material and readings (letters, manuscripts) of most interest. But there is some fascination with his personal items, game scores and of course the many photographs I have not before seen.

I look forward to spending more time with this fascinating book.>

Premium Chessgames Member
  ChessBookForum: Here is part of <Paris Attack's> profile, which will help you chess book lovers understand why his forum is a truly excellent place to find out about chess books-

He always does his best to answer every question about chess books:

<I am 58 and have played chess since the age of 16. I really only played actively until my mid-20s but continue to follow the game and study. I was close to 2100 for a few months but dropped back to 1950-2000 when I stopped playing tournament chess. Today, for a livelihood I trade currencies and write on that subject. I live in Colorado but have a small condo in Honolulu (where I lived for several years). I have collected chess literature since shortly after I began playng the game. I don't have a world-class collection but it is significent - about 5k volumes including complete or long runs of quite a few periodicals, English and foreign.>

Premium Chessgames Member
  FSR: I found the non-chess material in "Bobby Fischer Uncensored" very disturbing, even though I knew Fischer was a crazed anti-Semite. There are pictures of books from Fischer's library such as "Mein Kampf," "The Protocols of the Learned Elders of Zion," and "The White Man's Bible." There are various letters from Fischer in which he rants and raves about the Jews. There is also a notebook written by Fischer with pages and pages of comments like "kill the motherf***ing Jews." Really vile stuff.

DeLucia's book "A Few Old Friends" is a much more enjoyable book to my mind. AFAIK you can still get a copy of the second edition from Dale Brandreth at If you can afford it, it's a gorgeous and wonderful book that anyone who loves chess will treasure.

The Fischer book may well make sense as an investment, but personally the weird stuff really sours me on the book. I'm not blaming DeLucia - his goal was to present Fischer "warts and all" and he succeeds in that - but for me I'd rather focus on Fischer's chess genius and not think too much about his dark side.

Premium Chessgames Member
  ChessBookForum: <FSR> Thanks very much for adding your own interesting points to this controversial <Bobby Fischer Uncensored> volume--

And also thanks for your invaluable link to the <A Few Old Friends> chess book.

Perennially vexing topic- Fischer's chess vs. Fischer's all too frequently objectionable personality.

Jun-17-09  Open Defence: <Chess Magazines>

New in Chess seems to be at the top, any others ?

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