Thursday, October 17, 2013

Review: What It Takes to Become a Chess Master by Soltis

I need a breakthrough in chess understanding. I hope this book will be one of the tools I need.

First, let me say that I liked this book very much.

Second, I wish this had been written by Silman.

Soltis writes short books with a few examples from which you must develop your own study plan, and find your own materials.

Silman writes door stops with copious examples and explanations.

I failed many of the end of chapter quiz questions, and am not sure yet what I need to do to be able to see what Soltis wants us to see in these positions.

Third, an reviewer suggests Popov's "Chess Lessons" to be a better book on the same topic. 

I did glean some new exercises as I study/annotate game.

Exercises for master games:
  • List targets (both sides) in a position
  • Evaluate early middle game positions: immediate action needed?
  • Evaluate a position does it require a lot of calculation or little?
Exercises for my games:
  • How could I have gotten more?
  • Was there a plan which would have been easier?
  • Try to understand "unintentional" sacrifices. Can I learn to see comp before it just happens?

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