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  1. 17 Feb '08 20:29
    Basically, I'm looking to procure five chess books which will significantly improve my playing strength. I'm not particularly well read on any aspect of the game, so I am looking for a wide range.

    Any suggestions?
  2. Standard member Ragnorak
    For RHP addons...
    17 Feb '08 20:42
    Originally posted by darkbishop28
    Basically, I'm looking to procure five chess books which will significantly improve my playing strength. I'm not particularly well read on any aspect of the game, so I am looking for a wide range.

    Any suggestions?
    Winning Chess by Chernev and Reinfeld, Understanding Chess Tactics by Weteschnik, Chess Tactics for Champions by Polgar, Reassess your chess by Silman, an introduction to openings like Winning Chess Openings or similar and an end game book: I only have Fundamental Chess Endings and I couldn't recommend it to you.

    6, but what you gonna do?

    D
  3. 17 Feb '08 20:44
    "Discovering Chess Openings" by John Emms
    "Winning Chess Endings" by Yasser Seirawan
    "Winning Chess Tactics" by Yasser Seirawan

    Then "after" you've worked through these then move on to

    "The Amateurs Mind" Jeremy Silman

    and a puzzle book...but I'd pick one you like from a shop with a large selection

    "The Ultimate Chess Puzzle Book" by John Emms is good and there is a new book by Richard Palliser although I can't recall the title.

    You may also want a book on a chosen opening.

    Keep visiting Chess Tactics Server www.chess.emrald.net and solving as many tactics as you can each day.
  4. 17 Feb '08 20:48
    Originally posted by Ragnorak
    ...Understanding Chess Tactics by Weteschnik...
    For a 1300-1400?
    I don't think so.
  5. Standard member Ragnorak
    For RHP addons...
    17 Feb '08 20:48
    Originally posted by Mahout
    "Discovering Chess Openings" by John Emms
    "Winning Chess Endings" by Yasser Seirawan
    "Winning Chess Tactics" by Yasser Seirawan

    Then [b]"after"
    you've worked through these then move on to

    "The Amateurs Mind" Jeremy Silman

    and a puzzle book...but I'd pick one you like from a shop with a large selection

    "The Ultimate Chess Puzzle Book" by Joh ...[text shortened]... tics Server www.chess.emrald.net and solving as many tactics as you can each day.[/b]
    Reinfeld's Winning Chess is waaaay better than Winning Chess Tactics IMHO, while offering a similar syllabus.

    D
  6. Standard member iru
    17 Feb '08 20:50
    If you want to improve your positional skills I would go for "Simple Chess" by Michael Stean. I've received my copy from Amazon few weeks ago and it's amazingly good!
    However at your rating range it is probably more important to concentrate more on tactics and endgame. I don't have any particular recommendations here but hope you will get plenty from other players.
  7. 17 Feb '08 20:53
    Originally posted by iru
    If you want to improve your positional skills I would go for "Simple Chess" by Michael Stean. I've received my copy from Amazon few weeks ago and it's amazingly good!
    However at your rating range it is probably more important to concentrate more on tactics and endgame. I don't have any particular recommendations here but hope you will get plenty from other players.
    I agree about tactics.
    Probably Sierawan's winning chess tactics is a safe bet, but I personally prefer Heisman's Back to basics: chess tactics.
  8. Standard member Ragnorak
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    17 Feb '08 20:53
    Originally posted by Squelchbelch
    For a 1300-1400?
    I don't think so.
    No reason why he couldn't read and understand it once he'd read a tactics intro like I recommended.

    D
  9. 17 Feb '08 22:00 / 2 edits
    Originally posted by Ragnorak
    Reinfeld's Winning Chess is waaaay better than Winning Chess Tactics IMHO, while offering a similar syllabus.

    D
    Chernev and Reinfeld's Winning Chess is a very good book, but it's out of print. The prospective buyer would have to get it via the used book market. It's not real hard to find, but I've noticed that the reasonably priced copies tend to be well worn. (Maybe that means people actually read the book!)

    Oh yes, also, it's in the older descriptive notation.
  10. 17 Feb '08 22:49 / 1 edit
    Practical Chess Endings by Paul Keres is the best endgame book I've read, and my #1 recommendation for sure. Ludek Pachman's Modern Chess Strategy and Nimzowitsch's My System are great classics too. I would also recommend a collection of analysed master games (Zurich International Chess Tournament, 1953, by Bronstein, is also a classic and my top choice) and Kotov's Think Like a Grandmaster, which gives some great insight about the game.

    Those are heavier than most other books recommended in this thread, but they'll certainly help you improve your game more than any others, if you're willing to put some time on them.
  11. 18 Feb '08 00:16 / 1 edit
    Originally posted by Ragnorak
    Winning Chess by Chernev and Reinfeld, Understanding Chess Tactics by Weteschnik, Chess Tactics for Champions by Polgar, Reassess your chess by Silman, an introduction to openings like Winning Chess Openings or similar and an end game book: I only have Fundamental Chess Endings and I couldn't recommend it to you.

    6, but what you gonna do?

    D
    Winning Chess by Chernev and Reinfeld,
    Well if it's better than Seirawans book and has a similar straightforward approach and clear explanations then yes....although another poster says it's in old notation so might be a bit tricky if this is so.

    Understanding Chess Tactics by Weteschnik,
    Be like giving a high school French student a copy of Proust in it's original language with a French English dictionary and asking them to read it. Nothing wrong with Prousts French of course but I'd have the student learn how to book a hotel room with a shower and order breakfast first.

    Chess Tactics for Champions by Polgar
    If this is the monster volume of tactics that my mate Sicilain Smaug has then it's the a great book...highly recommended... but I'd buy a bigger rucksack first.

    Reassess your chess by Silman
    Yes in that it's supposed to be a primer for The Amatuers Mind...but I hear he has a revised version due out soon so I'd wait for this to come out.

    an introduction to openings like Winning Chess Openings or similar and an end game book

    Agree
  12. 18 Feb '08 17:39
    I recently returned to chess after a long hiatus and have been reading voraciously. I'm not sure I would recommend the Silman books but don't disagree with any of the other suggestions above. If you can get Silman at the library and save your money for something you'll return to that might be a better plan.

    There are two books that I keep going back to:
    Capablanca's _Chess Fundamentals_
    Bronstein's _Zurich Intl. Chess Tourn. 1953_

    I would agree with the recommendations on a puzzle book. It is absolutely necessary.

    I don't know about openings books. I'm working through Watson's two volumes on Mastering the Chess Openings. It gives a good overview of a lot of openings with some depth on each, and complete games. I like it, but there's a lot there.

    I wish I knew a good endings book to recommend. I working through Van Perlo's _Endgame Tactics_. It is an absolute hoot but I'm not sure how much it's helping my endgame abilities.
  13. Standard member Ragnorak
    For RHP addons...
    18 Feb '08 20:14
    Originally posted by Mahout
    [b]Winning Chess by Chernev and Reinfeld,
    Well if it's better than Seirawans book and has a similar straightforward approach and clear explanations then yes....although another poster says it's in old notation so might be a bit tricky if this is so.

    Understanding Chess Tactics by Weteschnik,
    Be like giving a high school French student a copy o ...[text shortened]... ion to openings like Winning Chess Openings or similar and an end game book[/b]

    Agree[/b]
    I don't see any reason why somebody who has read the tactics primer's I suggested couldn't handle Weteshnik's book. Each position is detailed with a diagram, and only a couple of moves are given. I don't have it in front of me at the moment, but as far as I'm concerned he just deals with finding the patterns that you would have learned in the other 2 books.

    Polgar's book is quite large, but has a huge amount of highly illustrative tactics puzzles for you to practice on. I wouldn't recommend Reinfelds 1001 books for this as they are mostly rock hard.

    D
  14. 18 Feb '08 21:36 / 1 edit
    Anybody read Bronstein's "200 Open Games". I have just started playing again after more than 30 years and this was my bible (publ. 1970!). Anything by Pachman or Reinfeld I found useful and must re-read.

    Jon
  15. 19 Feb '08 18:00
    Is Chess Fundamentals by Capablanca a good semi-introductory book? The reviews on Amazon suggest it is.

    I'm a self-taught novice and new to this site. I just won my first game here (a few minutes ago). I'd like a good book to start with. My chess skills are rather unrefined and I'm unfamiliar with much of the lingo. I'd like to learn about openings and basic strategy. I don't really want to dig through 5 different books, at least to start.

    So, should I go with Chess Fundamentals or is there a better suggestion?