37 ( +1 | -1 ) What is......the worst chess book ever written? Some of my candidates are: Idle Passion(Chess and the Dance of Death)by A.Cockburn;anything by Franklin K.Young(a turn of the century "expert" who used military gibberish to explain the game),and last,but not least,any of the numerous and dreadfully bad books by Eric Schiller,especially those on the openings. Any other nominees out there?
15 ( +1 | -1 ) I'll agree partially with you......about Soltis.His "historical" books,like his bio of Marshall,are pretty good,but his opening books are awful,coming under the heading of "potboilers".
45 ( +1 | -1 ) MywayThat was a great fighting match but Lasker could extract macho from a milquetoast. Pologar retired at 23, she made a fortune off that five minute stuff. Worst book is interesting topic but to be honest, I don't think I've ever had a chess book I didn't get some benefit from. Rating chess books is kinda like rating sex---It's fantastic; it's great; it's excellent; it's good; it's pretty good! And thats as bad as it gets!
9 ( +1 | -1 ) wowthat certainly invites someone to buy the book. was it only to see if it's really that bad:) greetings.
39 ( +1 | -1 ) I have the Van Reek book......and it's aptly authored-this book reeks! The only saving grace is where Spassky himself annotates,but for the rest,it's a lot of gibberish,and the "translations" are a scream. Van Reek tried to blend Nimzovich with The Book of Five Rings,and The Art of War,and ended up coming off as a pompous, windbag jackass,who should be committed if he ever attempts to "write" another chess book ever again.
78 ( +1 | -1 ) Grand StrategyI hate to criticize someones use of english, especially, here in America, where we haven't used it for years. But the english in this book is so deliciously low, it makes the book, almost, irresistible.
However, there are times when the book rises above such criticism and comes up with some real pearls of wisdom. Look at this gem "Whites courageous advance starts a new harmonica." You ever been in a tight, tense situation on the chessboard when, out of the blue, you're opponent whips out the old harmonica and begins to serenade you with a little diity that gets your toes tapping and your body moving in rhythm to the music. All of a sudden you're caught off gaurd and he hits you with the bishop sacrifice on h7--- God, I hate it when that happens.
16 ( +1 | -1 ) Van Reek(what a name!)......is fast becoming the Edward D.Wood,Jr. of the chess book writing set. Grand Strategy is the Plan 9 From Outer Space of chess books-it's so bad,it's good!
22 ( +1 | -1 ) ExactlyThe cheesier the horror movie, the better it was. If they sucked big time, they were usually pretty good. Some became cult classics. Maybe Van Reek will become a cult classic.
12 ( +1 | -1 ) Yet another just popped up!www.chesscafe.com/REVIEWS/books.HTM
3 ( +1 | -1 ) thanks for the links, gambitnut…I think we have a winner.
24 ( +1 | -1 ) Even better!Here is a book reviewed by the late, great GM Anthony Miles that might be a contender. www.chesscenter.com/kingpin/Kingpin/book_reviews.htm
10 ( +1 | -1 ) “Restraint has the aim of restricting the opponent’s abilities.”
From the van Reek book, quoted by the chesscafe.com review.
6 ( +1 | -1 ) I liked both of Mile's reviewsEspecially the one about Schiller's "effort'-short,and to the point!
9 ( +1 | -1 ) schillerI think Miles felt that writing more was an utter waste of time.
23 ( +1 | -1 ) So......if Van Reek is the Edward D.Wood,Jr of chess books,I guess that makes Schiller the Phil "One-Shot"Tucker(Robot Monster) of the bunch.Someone ought to vaporize all of Eric's books with a Calcinator Death Ray!