This book takes the reader on a journey from early 19th century developments in the game up to the present-day. It takes in the revolutionary Wilhelm Steinitz’s early summation and establishment of a firm positional basis for chess and the considerable contributions made by all of the subsequent world champions and certain other great players, including the contemporary computer phenomenon, AlphaZero.
Take note of Vassily Smyslov’s wise words. Recalling a period of intense study in his father’s chess library, Smyslov stressed that, without obtaining an understanding of the ways in which chess has developed over time, no aspiring player is ever likely to achieve his or her fullest potential. What went for Smyslov also applies to all of the inspirational players who appear in this book. Today’s top players still borrow from the best games and ideas of past generations. Do join them!
This book takes the reader on a journey from early 19th century developments in the game up to the present-day. To that extent it can only be a subjective work and readers may hold other opinions. Though I hope that much in this book is, indeed, persuasive, please feel free to reflect and draw your own conclusions. I also aimed at containing my account in one accessible volume, inspired by such succinct chess classics, as Richard Réti’s, Masters of the Chessboard, Max Euwe’s, The Development of Chess Style, and others.