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Botvinnik: One Hundred Selected Games: 100 Selected Games (Dover Chess) [Kindle Edition]

Mikhail Botvinnik
4.3 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (3 customer reviews)

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Book Description

Learn chess from a World Champion! These 100 games were selected and annotated by Botvinnik himself as the best games he played before becoming World Champion in 1948. Includes contests against Alekhine, Capablanca, Euwe, Keres, Reshevsky, Smyslov, and others. Author explains his theories, the development of Russian chess, and six end game studies.

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Product details

  • Format: Kindle Edition
  • File Size: 12807 KB
  • Print Length: 288 pages
  • Publisher: Dover Publications; Annotated edition edition (28 Jun. 2012)
  • Sold by: Amazon Media EU S.à r.l.
  • Language: English
  • ASIN: B00A73F4WO
  • Text-to-Speech: Enabled
  • X-Ray:
  • Word Wise: Not Enabled
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  • Average Customer Review: 4.3 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (3 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #766,573 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
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Customer Reviews

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews
13 of 13 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Great lessons in strategic thinking! 6 Sept. 2000
By A Customer
This book contains one hundred of Botvinnik's games from 1926 to 1946. Unfortunatly a lot of his realy great games were played after 1946, but this book nevertheless provides insight into Botvinniks strategic thinking.
If this book had contained games of a later date i would not hesitate to give it five stars, as for now I would like to give it four and a half if that was possible.
If you have to choose between this and Tal's book on the title match in 1960 I would definetly go for Tal's book, which has better prose and fresher material. However, this is a very good book as far as the study of chess-technique goes, and definetly worth the bargain price.
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9 of 9 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Very instructive about HOW to play 4 Feb. 2008
By revbd
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
Botvinnik's games may not exhibit the clarity of Capablanca / Fischer or the virtuosity of Tal but his thinking, in this book, is very instructive. Botvinnik's annotations demonstrate how to analyse positions and how to find a clear strategic thread in chess games - in doing so Botvinnik shows how hidden resources can be found in seemingly dubious positions e.g. Botvinnik's amazing win, despite two sets of doubled pawns, against Levenfish.
The annotations of Botvinnik are notable in their definitiveness - which contrasts, for example, with the more 'balanced' annotative style of Keres - that some might find dogmatic but which I found helpfully conclusive.
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9 of 10 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars An all-time classic, though somewhat dated 28 Feb. 2003
By T. D. Welsh TOP 1000 REVIEWER
Mikhail Moiseyevich Botvinnik was probably the most respected and feared world champion of modern times. In this respect, he certainly rivals Karpov and Kasparov, while his demeanour was far more dignified than the latter's. Someone described the essential quality of Botvinnik's style as "iron logic", and that sums up the games in this collection.
A long time has passed since those days, and the names of the players will mostly be unfamiliar. The openings, too, may seem old-fashioned - but there is value in this. It's a chance to learn exactly what does happen if you play such-and-such a move, which nobody does nowadays. Moreover, Botvinnik's methodical building up of positional advantages has never been bettered and will reward patient study. Just where it looks most effortless, that is where the magic is hidden!
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on (beta) 4.6 out of 5 stars  17 reviews
30 of 31 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The Best Chess Strategist Ever? 26 Aug. 2007
By Classics Lover - Published on
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
We usually read grandmasters' game collections not to improve our endgame or tactical abilities, but to understand chess strategy and planning. Of course, Botvinnik was also superb tactician and a very strong endgame player, so there is surprisingly first-rate endgame and tactical play here than one might think. But that is the icing on the cake. It is in his strategic undestanding that he was heads and shoulders above his contemporaries, and for this reason this book is such a great classic.

First of all, Botvinnik had an incredibly deep and accurate undestanding of which positional factors matter more in a given position: e.g., is it important that White has a double, isolated pawn or not--considering that he has two bishops? Second, he knew perfectly how to create a plan to maximize his positional advantages and minimize his disadvantages. Finally, he was unmatched in converting the strategically-winning position so achieved into an actual victory, by flawless "conversion" of his positional advantage to material, or a mating attack, or a won endgame.

All this comes out very clearly in both Botvinnik's play and his annotations. He makes it look simple: a result of the iron logic and single-minded sense of purposes that guided him throughout every game. The reader will learn a lot about what chess strategy and chess planning are all about, both in general and in particular (e.g., which positional factors tend to matter in what kind of positions).

The one slight problem, which isn't Botvinnik's fault of course, is that this Dover reprint is in desciptive notation (e.g., "1. e4 c5" = "1. P-K4 P-QB4") which might annoy some players. But it is well worth to spend an hour or so to familiarize oneself with this notation even specifically for this book, to say nothing of numerous other older chess books one is giving up on otherwise.

At less than $10, it's a bargain.
31 of 34 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A must for any comprehensive chess course 21 Jun. 2001
By Mauro Casadei - Published on
Ok - i agree with many that thought that Botvinnik had no outstanding talent. Then why did he succeed so long ? The answer is method: you go through his games and are not amazed as in Tal's but he leads you through the logic of the position. Playing logically does not mean stereotyped or predictable: Botvinnik introduced the wildest variation in the Semislav; he was one of the first to adopt k-side expansions w/ g2-g4 in queen-pawn opening- even uncovering his king. Careful study of this book will repay much more than study say Shirov's games: it does describe wonderfully the way to handle typical key positions and themes. The only annoying thing is that Botvinnik uses too much the tone of an "illuminated teacher" that knows the absolute truth; don't be fooled when he says that the opponent's position is lost already from the late opening. This is not how chess work- even at superGM level.
9 of 9 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Botvinnik: 100 Selected Games 3 Jun. 2006
By Sat Diver - Published on
This old Dover underpriced book is a bible of chess wisdom from one of the strongest players to ever lift a pawn! The book is cramed with some of the best writting about chess you will ever find.My rating went from 1500 to 1800 after i reread this book back in the 70s.Chess was Science&Art to this Chess God. You will learn Chess the way it should be played today by a close study of this logical Chess Thinking World Champ!


Scott Young
18 of 21 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars An under-rated book by a great champion. 30 Mar. 2002
By Paul Weaver - Published on
For years this book sat on my shelf unopened. Before playing through the games and studies in this outstanding work I was under the impression that Botvinnik was a dry positional player. Nothing could be further from the truth. The games are highly instructive with outstanding analysis. Just by playing through them my play has gained some solidity and my endgame is more exact. The endgame studies will delight you. A very fine additional to the volume those studies were.
17 of 20 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Botvinnik, The Iron Strategist 21 April 2001
By A.J. Goldsby I - Published on
Botvinnik, The Iron Strategist
Botvinnik was one of the greatest all-time players. He was, by his own self-admission sometimes prone to tactical oversights ... especially after a long lay-off from chess. But yet he could play at a level few other GM's could match. Why was this?
A friend gave me a book on Botvinnik several years ago and encouraged me to study this great player. And while he may not have been the greatest tactician to ever play the game, he did something few players did. He was a magnificent planner.
He had a short-term plan, a medium range plan, and a long term plan for any position. Sometimes, he had a plan within a plan, within a plan. In fact, he could plan circles around the average GM.
This book contains a few errors in analysis. Its not organized as well as it could be. The opening are somewhat dated. Yet I could recommend this book to nearly any chess player wanting to improve his game. The games are thoroughly explained and very well annotated. If you are not a tactician who sees every shot, perhaps you could learn to plan like Botvinnik. Your game will definitely improve after reading this book. Learn the iron logic of the man who inspired entire generations of Soviet schoolboys to play chess.
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