Other Books / References

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Other Books / References

Post by BorgQueen on August 27th 2010, 8:21 pm

Hi all,

I was just wondering if there were other references / sites / books that you would recommend for learning positional chess? Starting from the beginning!

This course is quite advanced. I'm coping, but I get the feeling that I am missing some more basic learning for positional clarity. The course seems to take for granted some of these elementary "positional rules".

Can you recommend anything?

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Re: Other Books / References

Post by PawnCustodian on August 28th 2010, 9:15 am

My favorite books right now are Issac Lipnitsky's Questions of Modern Chess Theory and Israel Gelfer's Postitional Chess Handbook.

Lipnitsky's book is a 2008 translation of his book originally published in 1952 and is charactarized by its clear verbal descriptions of classic games and positions through Botvinnik.

Gelfer's handbook is collection of 495 positions originally published in 1991. It's not a puzzle book, it's a collections of positions organized around the common stategic themes to play over. What I like about this book is the short, instructive examples; I always get that feeling that I "got it" after playing through the positions. I think this book will be a good companion to the ICS course.

If you use a computer to study/analyze games Robin Smith's Modern Chess Analysis is an outstanding survey of the various techniques of chess analysis with computers for all phases of the game. The book itself is a bit dated for a technology book (published in 2004), the the advice on when to use deep analysis, multivariation analysis, engine tournaments, etc. etc. etc.... is still very relevant. The positional concepts addressed include "schematic thinking", "box canyons", "fortressess" and others, and discusses the strength and weaknesses of computer analysis in terms of these chess themes.

There are plenty of good puzzle books available, Nunn's in particular are very good. However, one of the lessons learned from the sports world is that when you are constantly testing yourself you are holding yourself back and not training to maximum efficiency. The books I've suggested here are for playing over and easy to digest, opium for chess players.


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Re: Other Books / References

Post by BorgQueen on August 28th 2010, 10:03 am

Excellent, thanks! I'll have a hunt around and see if I can find these books.

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Re: Other Books / References

Post by StarByrne on August 31st 2010, 7:31 am

The ICS do have a recommended book list as well located here: http://www.chessarea.com/chess-instructions/. They say these are the best books to buy and that you should study them all. I am not sure why this site is not linked to the ICS course site. I assume it's because the ICS course was created after this book list was produced and they simply forgot to create a link. The chessarea.com site though is created by the same people who created the ICS course and there is a lot of useful tips there as well as the book list. Atm I have just bought their recommended beginner book list and will begin making my way through the books alongisde studying the ICS course.

I believe their recommended endgame books are very good as well, from the research I've done these appear to be the top endgame books. However I would also like to recommend a few additions that I came across through research into endgame study: silmans complete endgame course from beginner to master and 100 endings you must know by Jesus De La Villa. Both of these books came out after their list was published and have recieved glowing recommendatons by many top players.

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Re: Other Books / References

Post by PawnCustodian on August 31st 2010, 7:52 am

StarByrne wrote:The ICS do have a recommended book list as well located here: http://www.chessarea.com/chess-instructions/. They say these are the best books to buy and that you should study them all. I am not sure why this site is not linked to the ICS course site.

Thanks for the link, I had no idea there was such a thing.

I have Dvoretsky's Endgame Manual, what I like about this book is that it is the only one I've seen that is color coded, so you can go in and work the essential positions, then go back and work the details later if you want.

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Re: Other Books / References

Post by StarByrne on August 31st 2010, 8:13 am

PawnCustodian wrote:
StarByrne wrote:The ICS do have a recommended book list as well located here: http://www.chessarea.com/chess-instructions/. They say these are the best books to buy and that you should study them all. I am not sure why this site is not linked to the ICS course site.

Thanks for the link, I had no idea there was such a thing.

I have Dvoretsky's Endgame Manual, what I like about this book is that it is the only one I've seen that is color coded, so you can go in and work the essential positions, then go back and work the details later if you want.

I only came across the link by accident myself. I was googling for best chess book list and the chessarea.com site was by the best I found. Dvoretsky's Endgame Manual is on their list as well under Intermediate>>Expert link I believe. I will definitely purchase it once I made my way through the beginner section books for sure. They recommend a lot of Dvoretsky's books if I remember correctly, must be a very good chess teacher.

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Re: Other Books / References

Post by PawnCustodian on August 31st 2010, 9:10 am

StarByrne wrote: I will definitely purchase it once I made my way through the beginner section books for sure. They recommend a lot of Dvoretsky's books if I remember correctly, must be a very good chess teacher.

You have to be careful with Dvoretsky, his books generally are pretty advanced, and always place a lot of effort on the reader. I think that the Endgame Manual is an exception.

Better than the book in my opinion is the software by A. Panchenko, Theory and Practice of Chess Ending. You can race through the the basics very quickly using the software.

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Re: Other Books / References

Post by Blue Devil Knight on August 31st 2010, 11:58 am

Silman's complete endgame course is great, though might be too easy for you...

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Re: Other Books / References

Post by BorgQueen on September 1st 2010, 7:58 pm

This is GOLD! Thank you very much, I am very appreciative!

Now I just need another lifetime to study all these books ^^

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Re: Other Books / References

Post by Chess? on September 2nd 2010, 10:56 am

great content, thanks
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Re: Other Books / References

Post by karpyan on September 6th 2010, 12:10 pm

"Simple Chess" by Michael Stean is good on basic positional concepts.

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Re: Other Books / References

Post by Blue Devil Knight on September 6th 2010, 2:39 pm

For really beginner positional ideas, believe it or not 'The Idiot's Guide to Chess' is really good. I read it and was surprised by how useful I found it!

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Re: Other Books / References

Post by BorgQueen on September 6th 2010, 7:37 pm

Haha! It's interesting how all those "idiot guide" are quite successful... I think it would be a bit embarrassing to be caught with one... you'd be labelled an idiot forever!

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Blue Devil Knight wrote:The danger of studying positional chess at the expense of tactics is that you will spend a half hour thinking about where a Knight belongs, and then proceed to put it on a beautiful square where it is en prise. Smile
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Re: Other Books / References

Post by chesstiger on September 7th 2010, 5:40 am

So? I have no problem being labeled a chess idiot. Afterall my otb chess ratings of 1853 (-54, belgian federation), 1931 (Fide) and 2051 (antwerp commercial chess federation) proves i am just a mere idiot mortal trying to be good at chess. Smile
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Re: Other Books / References

Post by Blue Devil Knight on September 7th 2010, 11:58 am

Yes, chess players in particular are loathe to pick up the Idiot's Guide. But it is the perfect book for beginner to lower-intermediate. Just a great book written by a US Champion Wolf.

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Re: Other Books / References

Post by BorgQueen on September 7th 2010, 8:41 pm

I wouldn't mind being labelled an idiot, it's the forever part that bothers me! ^.^

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Blue Devil Knight wrote:The danger of studying positional chess at the expense of tactics is that you will spend a half hour thinking about where a Knight belongs, and then proceed to put it on a beautiful square where it is en prise. Smile
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Re: Other Books / References

Post by PawnCustodian on September 8th 2010, 5:36 pm

Could use it to play mind games on your opponents. Just so long as the kids don't show up with How to Beat Your Dad at Chess.

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Re: Other Books / References

Post by HangingKing on September 8th 2010, 7:30 pm

For me i need books "why you are doing such bad moves" and "why you still keep doing them vol.2"


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Re: Other Books / References

Post by BorgQueen on September 8th 2010, 7:38 pm

lol... I am dreading the day my son starts beating me at chess, but I know it will happen if he doesn't quit.

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Resistance is futile.

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Blue Devil Knight wrote:The danger of studying positional chess at the expense of tactics is that you will spend a half hour thinking about where a Knight belongs, and then proceed to put it on a beautiful square where it is en prise. Smile
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Re: Other Books / References

Post by BorgQueen on September 8th 2010, 7:39 pm

HangingKing wrote:For me i need books "why you are doing such bad moves" and "why you still keep doing them vol.2"
lol... yeah, and for me: "I have shown you this opening line 400 times, why the hell can't you remember it??!"

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Blue Devil Knight wrote:The danger of studying positional chess at the expense of tactics is that you will spend a half hour thinking about where a Knight belongs, and then proceed to put it on a beautiful square where it is en prise. Smile
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Re: Other Books / References

Post by Blue Devil Knight on September 22nd 2010, 2:44 pm

I need to read
If you still lose to 2-move tactics, why are you studying strategy? Vols 1-3

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Re: Other Books / References

Post by BorgQueen on September 22nd 2010, 8:22 pm

This topic is awesome!

"When will you remember to check for enemy threats every move?" by BorgsConscience!

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Resistance is futile.

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Blue Devil Knight wrote:The danger of studying positional chess at the expense of tactics is that you will spend a half hour thinking about where a Knight belongs, and then proceed to put it on a beautiful square where it is en prise. Smile
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Re: Other Books / References

Post by StarByrne on September 23rd 2010, 12:58 pm

Just spent a few hours looking up the best chess books for the openings that ICS recommend, and heres my results:

Sicilian Kalashnikov
Sicilian Kalashnikov by Jan Pinski and Jacob Aagaard
The Killer Sicilian: Fighting 1 E4 with the Kalashnikov (early 2011)

French Defence

Play the French by John Watts
The French (Dangerous Weapons Series) by John Watts
The Complete French by Lev Psakhis
The Flexible French by Viktor Moskalenko
Mastering the French by Neil McDonald and Andrew Harley
Winning with the French by Wolfgang Uhlmann
The French Winawer by Neil McDonald
The Main Line French: 3 Nc3 by Steffen Pedersen
The French Tarrasch by John Emms
Attacking Chess: The French by Simon Williams (2011 release date)

Scandinavian Defence
Scandinavian Defence by James Plaskett
Starting out the Scandinavian by Jovanka Houska
Scandinavian Defence: The Dynamic 3...Qd6 by Ian Rogers and Michael Melts
The Scandinavian by John Emms

Dutch
Starting Out: Dutch Defence by Neil McDonald
Win With the Stonewall Dutch by Sverre Johnsen and Ivar Bern
Dutch Stonewall by Jacob Aagaard
Classical Dutch by Jan Pinski
Play the Classical Dutch by Simon Williams

Semi-Slav Defence
The Meran System by Steffen Pedersen
Chess Explained - The Meran Semi-slav by Reinaldo Vera
Play the Semi-Slav by David Vigorito
The Botvinnik Semi-Slav: Full Coverage of the Sharpest of Opening Systems by Steffen Pedersen
The Triangle System: Challening White in the Semi-slav by Glenn Flear (2010 Dec release date)

I'm about to start month 4 which goes through the Scandinavian Defence, just bought the 4 books listed off amazon. Hoping they'll complement the ICS material. Will write a review on each book after I've read them. I think we should have a book reviews subforum, I'll make a post in the suggestions box now Laughing .

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