Returning to chess

I just had a nudge from an old sparring partner who is looking to get back into chess again. What advice might you give?

Practise, study, review your games...  So much, so obvious.

DVDs: is it just me?

I treated myself to a ChessBase Fritz Trainer DVD recently, 943Mb of files crammed into one corner of a 4.7Gb disc.  Nearly all the space is taken up with movies of a balding middle-aged guy stumbling through commentary like:

That's what I call a book title

in the
St. Petersburg Tournament
-- 1895-96 --
Copious Notes and Critical Remarks
and illustrated by
Numerous Diagrams of Interesting Positions
together with
Portraits and Biographical Sketches


P.S. Further to my talk about Rowson, there's a characteristically thoughtful piece about Rowson as part of Streatham & Brixton Chess Club's series of posts about Improving at Chess

The Seven Deadly Chess Books

London 1922

Some of you may know that I've done a bit of work editing and typesetting for Hardinge Simpole, and my first project for them was pulling together everything I could find about the tournament in Lon

Logical Chernev

Authors and Openings Books

Ah, so easily done: the unobserved transposition.

Angus Dunnington's Winning with Unorthodox Openings [Everyman] gives on page 11 the line 1.b4 e5 2. Bb2 f6 3. b5 d5 4.e3 with the comment:

"Black must decide what his ambitions are in the centre"
...and gives 4...c5 and 4...Be6 as Black's main choices.

Then on page 23 the line 1.b4 d5 2. Bb2 f6 3. e3 e5 is given, where our guide remarks:

Review: Modern Chess Miniatures - Neil MacDonald

Modern Chess Miniatures by Neil MacDonald

ISBN 1 85744-166-4 Cadogan ?[[sterling]]9.99. 150pp inc. openings index

This is a most enjoyable little book. Miniatures are the most tempting of chess fare, tasty without being too rich, and MacDonald's collection includes a splendid variety. I imagine, in this database age, it's quite easy to collect and scan through umpteen miniatures, the added value coming only in the selection and commentary.

Review: Timman's selected games - Jan Timman

[This review first appeared in Westward Ho!]

Timman's selected games - chess the adventurous way

by Jan Timman

248pp.+index Cadogan Press, 1995
"It is not always the games with the best chess that leave behind the strongest memories (...) This selection of 80 games gives a picture of the fighting chess I have always championed."

  This is simply a collection of annotated games, some of which are very well-known and man

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Chess Quotes

"After black's reply to 1.e4 with 1..e5 leaves him always trying to get into the game"
"After white's reply to 1.e4 e5 with 2.f4 the game is in its last throes"