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I Play Against Pieces (Batsford Chess Book) Paperback – 31 Oct 2002


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Product details

  • Paperback: 256 pages
  • Publisher: Batsford Ltd (31 Oct. 2002)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0713487704
  • ISBN-13: 978-0713487701
  • Product Dimensions: 21.8 x 14 x 2.3 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (2 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 1,696,007 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Product Description

About the Author

Svetozar Gligoric, an acclaimed journalist and grandmaster, is the author of over 20 books on chess - including a best seller on the 1972 Fischer v Spassky which sold over 400,000 copies

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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on 5 Sept. 2003
Format: Paperback
This is certainly worth a look - it's a better read than some other games collections of recent years, i.e. the Kramnik or Khalifman books; this has warmth, humour and great games with understandable annotations, plus the occasional anecdote. The interesting thing about the structure of this book is that it's organised by opening, which many players will find refreshing and somewhat more practical than other such collections. Great as well for fans of the King's Indian Defence, or the White side of the Nimzo-Indian - there are plenty of games in these variations here. Nice production values round out a worthwhile purchase - good to see that Batsford are again producing quality chess books.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By cubist on 5 Mar. 2015
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
very good book ,A good way to learn a good opening repertoire
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on Amazon.com (beta)

Amazon.com: 7 reviews
43 of 44 people found the following review helpful
Absolutely beautiful work 24 April 2004
By Peter June - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Paperback
If you're looking for a great book on the life of a fascinating player, this is the book for you. "I Play Against Pieces" covers 130 of Gligoric's best games, categorized by opening. There's a wide range going from the King's Gambit to the King's Indian, the Nimzo-Indian to the Ruy Lopez; he covers tons of openings, which makes it ideal for somebody who wants to get a full taste of chess.
In addition to all the games there is a preface on Gligoric's life, which gives you some insight into his play. After all of the games, he also gives some interesting information on his contributions to opening theory in chess. All these provide an interesting supplement to the games.
The games are very high quality in here too. Gligoric's style of analysis is different than many other authors I've read. He doesn't spend time going over things like "18.Nc4!? (in the 24th USSR Championship Taimanov played 18.Ne4! against so-and-so resulting in [insert 20 move variation] with small advantage to white)" He sees that as useless commentary. No reader really wants to look into sidelines like that. Instead Gligoric takes a very text-based approach to game annotations with comments like "This is a concession to White since now the black bishop is not so well protected along the diagonal, but black was hesitant of abandoning the blockade of the e6 square and gave up on 29...Qe7." Rather than speaking in the merely concrete terms of chess (i.e. reams and reams of trivial variations) Svetozar instead chooses to instruct the reader in the simplest way possible.
So far as I've checked, this method means less variations which means less errors. I've double-checked the first 8 games with Fritz 8 and I've found practically no errors (one was where he mislabeled a mate in x moves when it was really a mate in x+2 moves). The fact that he doesn't get caught up in baffling analyses means less errors, and the errors with the text-annotations are unfound.
If you're looking for a rich game collection which instructs rather than confuses, buy Svetozar Gligoric's masterpiece: "I Play Against Pieces".
32 of 32 people found the following review helpful
Stuning collection work 26 Nov. 2005
By I. Knezovic - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Paperback
Svetozar Gligoric`s name is rarely heard among new kids in chess circles nowdays, and this moderate man was never braging caracter. But Svetozar Gligoric is a chess giant. Lived and played in era od absolute soviet domination, he managed to stay on absolute top in fifties and sixties.

I live in Croatia (which was part of Yugoslavia), and this great serbian GM influenced all of us by his calm and clear works, in which this book goes in piedestal of biography chess colection books there are. To the sheer quality of this book I can only compare the book "Life and games of Mikhail Tal", also written by author himself.

Gligoric is not starting his anotations at move 25. No, they begin when he predict player will lost the tread of logic of it, and that usually means somewhere around move 5. Sometimes even at move 1, not to explain the move by itself, but to give a broader picture of game.

Also, games are organized by openings, which greatly helps to follow authors mind paths in differing from game to game.

Author used to play more d4-s as write (70% vs 30% e4), and against d4 played KID, Nimzo, QGD, and vs e4 played mostely e5, and few c5.

He showed his 130 wins, almost every one was against the world top. For example, there are 4 wins vs Fisher(!) amongst lot of wins against Smislov, Botvinik, Larsen, Tal and frankely every

other from top.

Atomic bomb of positional chess.

Apsolutely recomended.
26 of 26 people found the following review helpful
Wealth of interesting material 8 Aug. 2003
By A Customer - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Paperback
This collection of GM Gligoric's games from the entire span of his long career is rightly considered a classic. He seems to update it once in a decade and it is republished with new material. This edition might be the last update, as the man is probably not playing much chess anymore.
I recommend this game collection over almost any other similar work by other players. Gligoric has the ability to annotate in a very lucid and comprehensible way. As a member of the older generation and as a positional player, his annotations do not include tons of Fritzy lines but are easy to read and follow. On the downside, the analysis is not always very deep as you'd find in a Nunn book, but there is still material here for months of study in this thick tome. And there's some pictures here also, which is rather rare nowadays for a chess book.
21 of 23 people found the following review helpful
Fond memories ... of a great player and writer. 9 Feb. 2004
By A.J. Goldsby I - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Paperback
Gligoric was/is one of the greatest chess players of the twentieth century ... at one time, (mid-to-late 1950's - through the very early 70's); there was a very small group of players that the (Soviet) Russians really feared. They were Bobby Fischer, (of course!); Miguel Najdorf, Samuel Reshevsky, Bent Larsen, and this player. (GM Svetozar Gligoric)
Gligoric, (11 times Yugoslav Champ.); won many international tournaments and was an extremely feared competitor ... his first major success (a surprise) was Warsaw, 1947; ahead of such players like Boleslavsky, L. Pachman, and V. Smyslov. His string of victories at major international tournaments is almost too long to cover, a few highlights are, first at: Hastings, 1960/61; Reykjavik, 1964; The Hague (zonal), 1966; Tel Aviv (Israel); 1966; Varna, 1971; Los Angeles, 1974; and Montilla, 1977. He also had wins in about a dozen major key matches. (These are only clear firsts, his 'top five' list of tournament finishes would be too long to try and name here!) He is obviously a little older now, and past his {best} playing days.
Gligoric is also one of the most respected teachers and authors who ever lived, at least outside of Russia. He wrote mostly for newspapers and magazines, his few books (today) are considered collectors' items.
Anyone who 'grew up' or played chess in the 1970's will fondly remember his "Chess Life & Review" articles. (I had a very small library of books as a teen-ager, but I carefully saved and indexed all of my magazines, Gligoric's "Game of The Month" was easily the most important theoretical articles that I had access to during that period.)
I respect and revere this player too much to go looking for mistakes with the help of the latest computer programs. (I found no serious mistakes in my rather casual review of about two dozen games.) My favorite game would be his win from the Black side of the Vienna Opening ... against another of my chess heroes, GM Bent Larsen. (Game # 3, beginning on page 20.)
Virtually every opening is represented, but in some instances, we see a rather limited perspective. (For example: Gligoric only plays the Black side of the King's Gambit. He also plays mostly the White side of certain openings like the Gruenfeld.) His list of victims reads like a "Who's Who" of chess from the late 1940's until the early 1980's. Some games are lightly annotated, some are very deeply annotated in the style that players that were familiar with his column in CL&R - would remember fondly.
A few of my {former} Internet students also purchased this book. Some of the positive things were that it was helpful to have the key points annotated, and the fact that the book is grouped by openings. The drawbacks were that some games had too many notes, and they found the complex things were explained, but simple maneuvers were not. (This means the best class of player that should buy this book should be 1600 or better.) Some of the lines are a little dated as well. (You could use "Nunn's Chess Openings" to cross-reference these lines.) I guess I would also have to add that I could NOT recommend this book to a beginner, or someone who has not been playing chess for very long.
In closing, I greatly enjoyed this book by Gligoric, the author has a deep love of chess and a level of understanding that few have ever attained. The only qualifier is that it may not be for everyone!
7 of 11 people found the following review helpful
A very nice game collection! 31 Jan. 2004
By ExcaliburBrief - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
I really consider this book a rare jewel in my chess library,well suited to ocassional selfstudy or for mentoring others about the art of positional play, very clear explaining in all the stages of the game as well some historical trivia facts..this book is classic in chess literature..
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