Anything but average | ChessBase

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Anything but average is a new chess book aimed at all chess lovers: players and problemists. We quote from the preface:

Free chess and chess composition complement each other wonderfully: combat and art. A game is a struggle between two people, a composition is the product of an individual. A chess game lives from mistakes, the chess problem dies from them. A game perfectly played by both sides often leads to a colorless draw; a perfect chess composition is an everlasting source of joy. Anticipation or plagiarism are irrelevant for the chess player, for the chess composer it means bad luck or transgression.

Details: www.berlinthema.de (including 24-page excerpt)

The second edition of this popular book is a delightful anthology of 400 chess games, combinations, endgame studies, problems, riddles and riddles. Immortal roles by Anderssen, Lasker, Fischer, Kasparov, Shirov, Carlsen and famous studies by Barbier-Saavedra, Troitzky, Réti, Pervakov and classical problems of all kinds as well as top compositions (selected as ‘Millennium Problems’ 2000 by 38 experts) presented and explained with additional diagrams, as well as compositions with asymmetry, castling, pawn promotion. The intent of the book is to entertain rather than teach.

A general problem of such books – the replayability of the games and positions – is praiseworthy solved by the author.

First of all, the diagram and the solution are always on the same page. You don’t have to jump to another section to find the trains.

Second, the book offers many additional diagrams to help you play the moves in your head. You can try it out: The picture (click to enlarge) is a scan of the original. The game is the famous byrne fisherman. See if you can follow the queen sack of young Bobby and the subsequent rampage of the knights directly on the page with no playback function available on the paper.

I think it’s a very nice form of presentation and I just manage to follow almost everything in my head – to understand the positions and the solutions. This is not the case with 90% or other chess publications – books and magazines. Most of the content in them remains unread. I can read Werner Keym’s book on the train, on the plane or in bed before I turn off the light.

Friend Werner kindly gave me permission to quote ad libitum from his book, which is in perfect English. He even suggested some positions for this article. We have shown you the first one before, but not as it is presented in the book. This is what it looks like. On our news page you can of course move the parts on charts, but I’ve included the supplementary charts to show you how to understand the study in your head.

No. 22: 1.Bh7? Kc3! 2.Kb5 Kd4 3.Kc6 Ke5 4.Kd7 (4.g6 Ke6 5.∼ Ke7 {22A} 1 / 2-1 / 2) 4 … g6! 5.L × g6 Kf4 or 1.Bb3? Kc3 2.Kb5 Kd4 3.Kc6 Ke5 4.Bf7 g6! 4.∼ Kf4 5.∼ Kxg5 1 / 2-1 / 2 or 1.Kb4? K × c2 2.Kc4 Kd2 3.Kd4 Ke2 4.Ke4 Kf2 5.Kf4 Kg2 6.Kg4 g6! 1 / 2-1 / 2.

The most unlikely move wins: 1.Bb1 !! K × b1 (1 … Kc3 2.Kb5 Kd4 3.Kc6 Ke5 4.Kd7! G6 5.Ke7! Kf4 6.Kf6 1-0) 2.Kb3 Kc1 3.Kc3 Kd1 4.Kd3 Ke1 5.Ke3 Kf1 6.Kf3! {22B} 1-0, 6 … Kg1 7.g6 / Kg4 Kh2 / Kg2 8.Kg4 / g6. A unique bishop’s sacrifice.

In this case, Example 22, there are two additional diagrams to help you follow the moves. They are marked with {22A} and {22B} in the notation.


No. 25: 1.Rc7 + Rd7! (1 … Kd6? 2.Qc5 +; 1 … Kf8? 2.Qf4 +; 1 … Ke6? 2.Qe3 + Kd5 3.Qd3 + 1-0) 2.Qc5 + (2.Qe3 +? Kd8! 3.Qc5 Rd5 +! 1 / 2-1 / 2) 2 … Kd8 3.Kh6!! {25A} Zugzwang 1-0, e.g. 3 … Qxc7 4.Qf8 # or 3 … T × c7 4.Qf8 + Kd7 5.Q × b8 or 3 … Ke8 4.Rc8 + or 3 … Rh7 + 4.R × h7 Qh2 + 5.Kg6 Qg3 + 6.Qg5 +. Other moves of wKg5 would be a draw (3.Kg4, Kh4, Kh5) or even lose (3.Kf5, Kf6, Kg6).

3.Kh6 !! is one of the greatest moves ever.


No. 40: 1.a7 f1Q 2.a8Q + Qf8 3.Qd5 + Kh8 4.Qd4 +! down (4.Qd7? Qd6 + 0-1; 4.Qh1 +? Bh4 5.Da1 + Kg8 0-1) 4 … Kg8 {40A} 5.Qc4 + Kh8 6.Qc3 + Kg8 7.Q × b3 + Kh8 8.Qc3 + Kg8 9.Qc4 + above Kh8 10.Qd4 + Kg8 {40B} 11.Qd5 + Kh8 (8.Qd7? Qd6 +! 1 / 2-1 / 2) 12.Qh1 +! Bh4 13.Qa1 + Kg8 14.Qa2 + up Kh8 15.Qb2 + Kg8 16.Qb3 + Kh8 17.Qc3 + Kg8 18.Qc4 + Kh8 19.Qd4 + Kg8 {40C} 20.Qd7 1-0. Queen stairs.

Below is a JavaScript replayer where you repeat all the lines and even start an engine to aid your analysis. But before we get to that, I would like to show you a notable problem from Werner Keym’s book:

Here I am not giving the solution – you can try to find out for yourself. It is also not available in the replayer – but of course the engine finds the wonderfully puzzling solution in a nanosecond.

Werner Keym: Anything but average – chess classics and unusual problems. Second edition (canvas) 2021. 25 € + postage.

Order by email: [email protected]



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