Based on the comments from my last post about chess strategies for beginners, I’ve decided to continue with some basic lessons. As I mentioned in the previous post, I strongly recommend buying the Comprehensive Chess Course. Here I will give some details on each book in the series.
The first book in the series, as already mentioned, is actually called Comprehensive Chess Course Volume I: Learn Chess in 12 Lessons. This book is great for players just starting out. It teaches how the pieces move, how to read and write moves, very basic mating techniques that are must-knows in order to win games, and some basic tactical ideas that must be learned in order to improve. If you so desire, you can find the book here.
The second book in the series is Comprehensive Chess Course Volume II: From Beginner to Tournament Player in 12 Lessons.
This book is really good for those who know how the pieces move and are ready to start the improvement process. It is filled with tactical ideas that are common knowledge to those players who are ever mediocre/mid level. It also teaches some basic openings and endgame skills. After studying this book, you would have an advantage over 80% of the players you would play, outside of actual tournament players. Amazon has this book here.
The third book in the series is called Chess Tactics for the Tournament Player. It’s focus is entirely on improving your tactical abilities, which happens to be the way to the greatest chess improvement. There is old saying that “chess is 99% tactics”. I don’t think this is necessarily true, but it there is a great deal of truth to it. You can buy it new from Amazon here.
The fourth book in the Comprehensive Chess Course series is called The King in Jeopardy: The Best Techniques for Attack and Defense. This book is tactical training on steroids! It is strongly recommended that the student masters everything in the 3rd book before tackling this one. Once you learn everything in this book, you will be AT LEAST as strong as a Class A player, which is a rating range of 1800-1999. To get this book, click here.
The fifth book in the series is called Chess Strategy for the Tournament Player. It is only now that you are taught actual strategies, which goes a long way to proving the “chess is 99% tactics” idea. This book is 344 pages of pure gold and again is highly recommended. Amazon has it it here.
The sixth book in the series is called Chess Training Pocket Book: 300 Most Important Positions in Chess. This book is smaller than the rest of the series and is intended to be a recap of everything you’ve learned through the first 5 volumes. I use this book over and over again to keep my tactics sharpened (like anything not used, tactical “alertness” can fade without constant practice).
The final book in the Comprehensive Chess Course series focuses on the final area of the chess game – the end game. Just the Facts! Winning Endgame Knowledge in One Volume is truly a masterpiece for anyone who truly wants to improve at chess. It is the largest book in the series at over 400 pages. It won the Chess Journalists of America Book of the Year for 2000-2001.
Good luck in your chess adventures and feel free to comment below if you have anything else to add.