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Bent Larsen's Best Games of Chess: Master of Counter Attack (Hardinge Simpole chess classics) [Paperback]

Bent Larsen
4.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (1 customer review)
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Book Description

17 Oct 2003 Hardinge Simpole chess classics
Bent Larsen is one of the outstanding figures of post-war chess, with top-level tournament victories spanning five decades. His outstanding fighting qualities have made him a great favourite with the chess public and even in the latter stages of his career he remained capable of sweeping victories over world-class opposition. While some other Grandmasters have settled for an easy retirement, Larsen still fires on all cylinders!


Product details

  • Paperback: 200 pages
  • Publisher: Hardinge Simpole Publishing (17 Oct 2003)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 184382082X
  • ISBN-13: 978-1843820826
  • Product Dimensions: 1.4 x 13.5 x 21.1 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (1 customer review)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 1,169,548 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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7 of 9 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Synopsis 6 July 2007
Format:Paperback
Bent Larsen is one of the outstanding figures of post-war chess, with top-level tournament victories spanning five decades. His outstanding fighting qualities have made him a great favourite with the chess public and even in the latter stages of his career he remained capable of sweeping victories over world-class opposition. While some other Grandmasters have settled for an easy retirement, Larsen still fires on all cylinders! This classic book is Larsen's greatest contribution to chess literature. It follows his career from his early years in Denmark, through to Grandmaster recognition in 1956 and World Championship contender in the 1960s. At that time he was probably the most imaginative player in the world and was widely regarded as the best hope for a western World Champion. Indeed, in 1970 he held top board against Spassky for the Rest of the World against the USSR, ahead of Bobby Fischer! Although Larsen never quite attained the supreme title, his tournament career remains truly exceptional. Larsen's willingness to fight with either colour is captured by his view that 'all pieces are attacking pieces', an apt motto for the Master of Counter-Attack.
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Amazon.com: 4.2 out of 5 stars  5 reviews
20 of 22 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars WAY overpriced for a nearly 40-year-old book... 6 May 2008
By bckm - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
I had one previously bad experience with this publisher, Hardinge Simpole, but I chalked it up to a one-time thing. I bought this book and Bent's games and annotations get five stars, of course, but a simple reprint (digital or not, it's JUST a reprint - not even in algebraic format!) doesn't merit a $25 price tag, which knocks off three stars.

I doubt I'll ever buy anything from Hardinge Simpole again. If you MUST buy this book, see if you can get the original, older version from a used bookstore or the reprint from one of the many fine sellers here on Amazon. $25 is WAY too much for a nearly 40-year-old book with a new (and a generic, highly unimaginative) cover.
2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Legendary Player, Great Notes, but a Terrible Value 1 Oct 2013
By R. Tobias - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
This is a special games collection. GM Bent Larsen was easily the 2nd strongest player in the Western World, next to Bobby Fischer, and played with a very distinctive, original and combative style. As such, his games are unusually interesting and lively, with imbalances of a type not often seen. He had a knack for taking positions that seemed disadvantageous or even lost and turning them into wins with his strong, creative and determined efforts. This collection is 50 games annotated by the great man himself, and among all games collections, this surely must rank among the very best for the quality of play and insightfulness of the notes. It is the ideal to have games annotated by the player himself, of course, as only he can explain what was going through his mind during the play, and Larsen is very conscientious in giving his reasons for his play, alternative lines considered, and why they were rejected, etc. There are some really classic battles, such as his win 1966 Piatigorsky Cup over Petrosian as Black playing, of all things, the King's Indian Defense, which Larsen admits, he did not know as well as the leading Soviet players!! Such was the courage and fiery nature of the man. What must he have thought of modern GM's who resort to playing boring stuff like the Petroff Defense?? There are only two drawbacks to this book, neither of any fault of the author: 1) It is in descriptive notation, and would benefit from a conversion to algebraic. Don't let this scare you off, though. An afternoon spent going through a few of these games, and you will become comfortable with working with descriptive. 2) The second problem is more serious. This book is GROSSLY overpriced. Compare this book to the typical Dover reprint, and you will see that this book is priced far, far too high for a simple reprint. I bought this book solely because upon GM Larsen's death I really wanted this collection, but I will never pay up to this publisher again unless they bring their books in line with publishers like Dover. Look for an original copy, if one can be found. Five stars for content, but two stars at best for value. ADDENDUM: A new book of 120 of Larsen's games, annotated by Larsen also, is being put out in Sept. by NewInChess. The title is "Bent Larsen's Best Games: Fighting Chess with the Great Dane". With over twice as many games, in algebraic, and for about the same price as this book, there is a new clear first choice coming!
4 of 6 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Synopsis 9 July 2007
By Hugh Davies - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Paperback
Bent Larsen is one of the outstanding figures of post-war chess, with top-level tournament victories spanning five decades. His outstanding fighting qualities have made him a great favourite with the chess public and even in the latter stages of his career he remained capable of sweeping victories over world-class opposition. While some other Grandmasters have settled for an easy retirement, Larsen still fires on all cylinders! This classic book is Larsen's greatest contribution to chess literature. It follows his career from his early years in Denmark, through to Grandmaster recognition in 1956 and World Championship contender in the 1960s. At that time he was probably the most imaginative player in the world and was widely regarded as the best hope for a western World Champion. Indeed, in 1970 he held top board against Spassky for the Rest of the World against the USSR, ahead of Bobby Fischer! Although Larsen never quite attained the supreme title, his tournament career remains truly exceptional. Larsen's willingness to fight with either colour is captured by his view that 'all pieces are attacking pieces', an apt motto for the Master of Counter-Attack.
9 of 14 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Possibly the most interesting of 20th century players. 9 Oct 2005
By S. Hameed - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Paperback
I have always found that works on Chess are most accurate (if not always most readable) when written by the player, eliminating the need for second degree sources and speculation. Despite the fact that he never made it to the title of World Champion, Larsen is possibly one of the most prominent figures of 20th century chess, with a career spanning five decades, falling on either side of his contention for the title in the 1960s.

His book runs straight from the early years in Denmark through to the glory years, and is a suitable commentary on the experiences of one of the most innovative of players. It is a good read in general, and a necessity I think for anyone whose interest lies in 20th century chess.
3 of 6 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Bent Larsens Best Games Of Chess 22 Jun 2008
By Jan J. Yunik - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
I was quite happy with the format of the book,overall it is a well written book.Bent Larsen was a great chess player and if not for Bobby Fischer he probably would have faced Boris Spassky for the world title.
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