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Play Chess and Live Longer

Adrian Harvey reviews   The average life expectancy for males in the nineteenth century was forty-six.1 What is striking about this selection of major figures in Victorian chess is the very long lives they enjoyed. With the exception of Zukertort, whose lifespan was average for…

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Bobby Fischer Revisited: Part 2

Nagesh Havanur           Endgame by Frank Brady 402 pages, hardback Crown Publishers, 2011 http://www.randomhouse.com/crown/   ‘In life we are all duffers.’ Belgrade, 30 October 1959 Mikhail Tal has won the Candidates’ Tournament. After the closing ceremony he invites fellow participants to…

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Bobby Fischer Revisited: Part I

Nagesh Havanur               Endgame by Frank Brady 402 pages, hardback Crown Publishers, 2011 http://www.randomhouse.com/crown/ It all began with wedding bells in Moscow. Regina Wender, a vivacious medical student met Hans Gerhardt Fischer, a handsome scientist in 1933. Regina was…

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Bad Chess Writing

Edward Winter has written a funny and perceptive piece about the faults of chess writers. The following review echoes many of his criticisms. The Brain Games World Chess Championship by Raymond Keene and Don Morris Everyman, 2000 Review by Steve Giddins   It is often…

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Chess on the Radio

A recent radio broadcast examined the history of chess on the BBC. Between 1958 and 1964 there were regular chess programmes on the Third Network (now Radio 3), a mixture of essays, interviews and games. Contributors included Alexander, Barden, Euwe, Fischer, Gligoric and Golombek. Some…

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Coffeehouse Chess Tactics

Talent and youth, bright middle-class children with psychopathic tendencies – that’s what’s needed for success at tournament chess; with the emphasis on youth. And so their mums send them forth with the Spartan mother’s warning: come back victorious or don’t come back at all. Well,…

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Chess Duels

This is one of the best chess books published in recent years. Perceptive, instructive, rich in anecdote and self-deprecating humour, Chess Duels is a candid and entertaining tour of elite chess and its leading personalities.

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Not the British Chess Magazine

NTBCM was a funny spoof magazine edited by Murray Chandler. Borrowing the format of its venerable target, NTBCM published only one issue (in 1984), an entertaining mix of strange games, jokes and witty articles such as  ‘How Weird Is Your Chess’ by Jon Speelman, ‘Do…

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Troubled Relationships

KING’S GAMBIT A son, a father, and the world’s most dangerous game Paul Hoffman Hyperion, 2007, 424 pages   Review by Sarah Hurst Paul Hoffman hit on a great idea for a book, but I’m not sure that he was aware of it. By the…

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Has Karpov Lost His Marbles?

Tony Miles   As it happens I am in a position to reveal exclusively to Kingpin readers (unless, of course, someone else actually offers to pay me) the true and tragic story of why the invincible Anatoly failed to dispose of that young upstart Kasparov….

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