Ivanov-Benjamin, Jacksonville 1990. Black to play
And our chess book of the year is…
The laid-back style of Jeremy Silman’s How To Reassess Your Chess is deceptive: this is an excellent compendium of practical match play
Ronan Bennett and Daniel King guardian.co.uk
Monday 21 November 2011 11.48 EST
Cue fanfare, charge your glasses. The judges are delighted to announce that Jeremy Silman’s How to Reassess Your Chess 4th edition is the winner of our book of the year prize.
Congratulations to Silman and his publisher Siles Press.
We are both big fans of Silman’s writing. His Endgame Course was a strong contender for the prize a couple of years back and this year’s winner is written in the same deceptively laid back, breezy style. We say deceptive because Silman has years of experience on the tournament circuit so really understands the game – the practical game, not just whether a computer thinks a move is good or bad. Everything he talks about is practical and relevant. He discusses common problems and common positions in detail, but the book is also personal and anecdotal in a way that brings examples and ideas vividly to life.
Silman’s focus is on positional understanding, without which, he argues, it is impossible for the tournament player to make significant progress. At 650 pages – almost 200 of them dedicated to answering test questions – it’s a hefty and ambitious work, and excellent value. By the way, if you have bought one of the previous editions, don’t be put off: Silman has totally rewritten the book with new examples and original ideas.