Category Archives: Book reviews

Book Review: Luther’s Chess Reformation by Thomas Luther

When ”Luther’s Chess Reformation” came out I had no doubts it would be an ”at least interesting” book to read, so I purchased it without even downloading the sample excerpts available at the online store. I have followed Luther’s chess career and studied his games for many years, so I was very curious to read what he had to say.

GM Thomas Luther

It only took the first chapter to exceed all the expectations I had on this piece of work. Luther’s captivating narrative on his beginnings as a chess player, from a little kid to a Grandmaster is quite an enjoyable read. Between the stories of growing up in the old Germany, the author shows important games he played with insights that are very instructive no matter what your level is.  The games are explained with more observations than complex variations, making the study quite pleasing. The reader will quickly fall inside the Grandmaster’s mind and learn what GMs think.… Read more

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Book review: Pearls of Azerbaijan by Djakhangir Agaragimov

The book of the 2016’s Olympiad, “Pearls of Azerbaijan” contains a selection of tactics for chess players of all strength who want to improve their tactical vision.

The author, Grandmaster Djakhangir Agaragimov, had the idea of creating this book while going through the games of the Azerbaijani players who he noticed created many combinational motifs in their play. Out of all those games, he decided to select the most beautiful and sparkling ones and put them in this volume just in time for the start of the 42nd Chess Olympiad that was celebrated in Baku.

The reader can find all types of tactics, as the book is structured in three levels of difficulty – easy, medium and hard. The first part of the exercises are very useful for lower rated players who want to train their ability to immediately spot basic tactical motifs. Not much calculation is required here, although there are situation when you’ll have to rely on your intuition.… Read more

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Book review: Positional Decision-Making by Boris Gelfand

We often get questions about the books we recommend reading and studying, so we have decided to make a list of the ones we read and liked a lot. It has been a while since this book has been released (the second one is out for some time as well), but it is a great read and we will start our list with it.

The author, Boris Gelfand, needs no further introduction, as he has been a top player for many years. His play is methodical and very instructive, hence many of his games are on our list of “model games”. It was even better to play through them while reading the book, while reading his own thoughts and comments on the moves.

Boris Gelfand (photo credit: AP/Misha Japaridze)

This takes me to the first thing I liked at this book, and this is the honesty of the author when speaking about his own games and giving sidelines.… Read more

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