Books for Novices and more advanced players

Kasparov: My great predecessors
I am really enjoying this book and look forward to reading all five in the series. If you have an interest in chess you really should own this collection of books. Kasparov's love of chess and chess history shines through, even though it has been Ghost written! Particularly fine are the verbal descriptions of the games, as clashes between 2 human beings, not just abstract moves on a chess board, capturing the human element of the history of chess. The books are suitable for all abilities but will need to be read differently: novices will be happy just reading the text and following the games moves, intermediates will enjoy some of the variation analysis and advanced players the whole thing. There will then be cause to keep revisiting these books throughout your chess career.

Judit Polgar: From GM to Top Ten
In her exceptional book Judit tells the story of her rise from teenage grandmaster to Top Ten superstar. The games are highly instructive with detailed explanations, easy-to-follow variations that are full of unexpected attacking ideas. The book also features extensive biographical material including Judit's recounting of her famous loss to Kasparov at Linares where the World Champion may have got away with violating the touch move rule. It is beautifully produced with numerous photographs and personal stories of the greatest female player of all times.

"Dad" means anyone better than you, but your Dad is probably a good start. Lots of great ideas and plans with which to ambush your opponents. This will be a potent source for many years.

Chess enthusiasts of all ages and levels will find this book an instructive delight. In a simple, easy-to-understand format it explains how to bamboozle your chess opponents using commonly occurring tactical motifs. The illustrative positions, all taken from real games, show the 50 Tricky Tactics that experienced chess masters use to win their games. Recognising frequently-occurring tactical ideas is vital to success in chess. One of the fastest and most enjoyable ways to improve at chess is by learning these thematic manoeuvres. Beginners will benefit from the clear explanation of basic concepts, such as how to utilise a fork, pin, or skewer. Advanced players will delight in the many devious middlegame tricks - some classified here for the first time - which can even catch out grandmasters. Chess Tactics for Kids makes improving easy and fun, and is full of helpful explanations on how to approach chess games with confidence - and success.

An absolute classic written by a World Champion with very clear and intuitive explanations. This should be part of everyone's chess library.

A huge collection of checkmates in 1, 2, and 3, plus short games, endgames, and attacking patterns carefully organised by Laszlo Polgar, who coached his three daughters to Master level! A fantastic resource that I still use to sharpen my claws!

This volume carries on from where Vol 1 left off. It is in the same format, has lots of examples, puzzles, and games to learn from. At the end of this you will be a tough nut to crack for any chess player.

Similar in approach to How to beat your Dad at Chess. This gives a thorough classification of 23 essential mating situations, including Legal’s pseudo-sacrifice, smothered mates, Greco’s mate, the Corridor mate, and many others. These ideas are drawn from 127 master games by Tartakower, Janowski, Rubinstein, Blackburne, and others. An excellent book

This book focuses on the beautiful paradox in chess that it is easy to learn how the pieces move but difficult to play even a moderately good game. It takes the student on a journey through his own mind and returns him to the chess board with a wealth of new-found knowledge and the promise of a significant gain in strength.

Although the book is marketed at beginning chess players, and particularly children, most non-expert players will benefit from it. It gives advice that works. Well-written and illustrated, this charming book is a delight.

There are few chess books which deserve a place in the library of every player, but Chess for Tigers is one of them. It tries to get you to play to the best of your abilities by making you aware of your strenghs and weaknesses and by showing how to focus on what is critical to your goal of WINNING. Essential for the competitively minded player (i.e. all of us!)

This excellent book covers hundreds of positions from actual game situations which appear to be drawn but actually have a hidden mate. The reader who applies themself will take away invaluable practical knowledge, just waiting for the right moment in actual play.

Whilst offering a fascinating look into the world of competitive chess this book about a father who discovers that his seven-year-old son is a genius at playing chess, it is more a poignant study of the differences between parental idealism and proper parenting. It is also an observantly witty portrait of a precocious child who is still, after all, a child, and still eager for the joyful discoveries of youth. The boy plays chess for fun, but when he's tutored by a former champion and entered into high-pressure competitions, an enjoyable pastime becomes a source of tension and resentment, forcing the father to reconsider his parental priorities.

Accompanied as ever by the faithful Watson, Holmes is summoned to investigate why chess games at a number of clubs and stately homes have been mysteriously abandoned. Using his remarkable powers of deduction and retrograde analysis, Holmes reconstructs, move by move, the events that occurred at the scene of the crime - the chessboard. No sooner is the solution arrived at than the game is afoot once more - this time in pursuit of the murderous Moriarty, whose contribution of 10 devilish chess problems can be found at the end of the book. This is a compelling read and poses some real brain-breaker puzzles.