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The Greatest British Chess Player

  Joseph Henry Blackburne: A Chess Biography 1 Tim Harding 592 pages | hardback | 95 illustrations | 1,186 games | $75.00 Jefferson: McFarland, 2015     Adrian Harvey When Nigel Short defeated Anatoly Karpov in their match in 1992 he surely secured the greatest triumph ever by…

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Ventriloquism for Beginners

First Lesson: One hand grasps the controls in the back of the dummy   World Championship challenger Sergei Karjakin with the man who butters his bread For more information Valery Badmayev, Killing a Journalist, Kingpin, 22 November 2015 Bill Browder, Red Notice: How I Became Putin’s No….

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The Seeing Eye

  ‘The game of chess draws its life and impulse from the contrast between seeing and not seeing and the innumerable gradations between the two. The optical is more powerful than the technical and theory has little significance if it is not associated with the…

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Beauty and Power

  ‘the best chess contains a striving not just for victory but for something beyond: for an ideal harmonious state that produces a perfect mixture of creativity, beauty and power.’ Julian Barnes, ‘TDF: The World Chess Championship’ The New Yorker (December 1993) reproduced in Letters…

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Colin Crouch, 1956-2015

  Colin Crouch, who has died at the tragically young age of 58, had a magnificently mischievous sense of humour. He contributed several pieces to Kingpin, serious and funny, and wrote one of the wittiest parodies of a chess writer you are likely to read. An affable,…

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Bad Men

  ‘Garry Kasparov may loathe him, but the grandmaster in him surely has to recognise that Putin operates more like a chess player than most of his fellow world leaders. He has a long-term objective – to rebuild Russian power. His core strategy is the…

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The Final Round

If you’ve missed the US Chess Championships until now there’s still time to catch the final round. Well worth watching not only for the chess but for the engaging commentary team of Jennifer Shahade, Maurice Ashley and Yasser Seirawan. If their observations seem more entertaining…

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