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1. Complete Games of World Champion
2. Anatoly Karpov: Chess Is My Life
3. My Best Games (Progress in Chess)
5. Beating the Grunfeld (Batsford
6. Karpov on Karpov: A Memoirs of
7. How to Play the English Opening
8. Diary of a Chess Queen
9. The Semi-Open Game in Action:
10. Anatoly Karpov's Games as World
15. The Closed Openings in Action
16. Karpov's Caro Kann: Panov's Attack
17. Chess and the Art of Negotiation:
18. How to Learn from Your Defeats
19. Winning With the Spanish (Batsford
20. Chess at the Top, 1979-1984 (Pergamon

1. Complete Games of World Champion Anatoly Karpov (Chess)
by Kevin J. O'Connell, etc.
 Paperback: 384 Pages (1976-02-19)
list price: US$21.00
Isbn: 0713431415
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2. Anatoly Karpov: Chess Is My Life (Pergamon Russian Chess Series)
by Anatolii Evgenevich Karpov, A. Roshal
 Hardcover: 359 Pages (1979-06)
list price: US$33.95
Isbn: 0080231187
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3. My Best Games (Progress in Chess)
by Anatoly Karpov
Paperback: 295 Pages (2008-04-28)
list price: US$39.95 -- used & new: US$24.23
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: 3283010021
Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars
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Editorial Review

Product Description

In 1975, Anatoly Karpov was declared chess champion of the world when the eccentric Bobby Fischer declined to defend his title against his Russian challenger. "Tolya" went on to prove that he was no paper tiger over the next three decades, during which he held the FIDE world championship for 17 years and won more than 160 major chess tournaments, an all-time record. The unique career of the Russian grandmaster can be appreciated from these 100 games, each of which is annotated by Karpov. All chess enthusiasts can profit and learn from these incredibly matches.

... Read more

Customer Reviews (2)

5-0 out of 5 stars A Great Selection and Comments
Like always, Karpov has been great in selection of 100 number of his best games and explaining the games strategies and moments. I Loved It!

5-0 out of 5 stars One should be fair to Karpov and Lasker.
Why I was young, I don't like Karpov's or Capablanca's games. My feeling
is the the win was mechanical and boringI like attacking players like Alekhine, especially Adolf Anderson, the winner of the " Immortal Game. " But as I grow older, my taste change, players like Tal, Shirov, Judit, theregames I still like, but I also now appreaciate the games of Karpov. His stategy is excellent. If one have patience to play through his games, the games are as enjoyable as Kasparov's or Alekhine. Why I mention Lasker, I think he with Karpov do not have the respect from Chess Fans. Lasker and Karpov, from any point of view, concerning their results, playing stregth, must be included in the greatest players of all time. Fischer's style is in between Karpov and Kasparov. So that is why Fischer's games are so fascintating. But it is pity for chess fans that Fischer did not play after becoming Champion. Imagine the following scenario, if Fischer continued to play, Karpov, even if the aborted championship acutally held and even if Karpov lost, Karpov would still improved. Then comes Kasparov. Then let us imagine a year in 1980s, say 1985. Fischer at that tme is 42, if still active, then he still would be one of theor the the strongest players in the world, Karpov,at his peak in 1985, then the rising star Kasparov, if these 3 greatest player of all time play to each other, friends, imagine what happen!! But this is just a dream!!!I then woke up.In this occasion, I also like to protest for Lasker for not including in greatest players of all time of chess. His strong middle and endgame technique,his shart tactis,he held the longest records of championhip for 27 years, he played still very strong even if he grew old, ( Alekhine, even at his best, just won ONE game from Lasker when Lasker waslong long time passing his peak ).So no matter how other people think, I think Lasker
must be ranked as one of the greatest chess players of all time!!! ... Read more

by Anatoly Karpov
 Paperback: Pages (1989-03-31)
list price: US$15.95 -- used & new: US$63.93
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: 0020218117
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5. Beating the Grunfeld (Batsford Chess Library)
by Anatoly Karpov
Paperback: 192 Pages (1993-03)
list price: US$19.95 -- used & new: US$85.81
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: 0805026320
Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars
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Editorial Review

Product Description
Since his surprise choice of the Grünfeld Defense in the 1986 World Championship match, Gary Kasparov has regularly adopted the Grünfeld in tournaments and matches around the world. Against Karpov, however, this opening has proved an unfortunate choice and Karpov has won more World Championship Games against Kasparov in this opening than in any other.Highlights of this book include: Original winning ideas against the Grünfeld; Unique insights into Karpov's World Championship prep­aration; Detailed coverage of key fashionable variations; Fascinating tips from a former World Champion.No ambitious player can afford to take on or play the Grünfeld Defense without this book! ... Read more

Customer Reviews (1)

4-0 out of 5 stars A Good Start
Published in 1992, former World Champion Anatoly Karpov offers 6 chapterson facing Black's Grunfeld defence. An uncompromising system. At the timeof publication Karpov had scored 6 wins, 1 loss and 16 draws vs GarryKasparov (1986-1990) using his anti-Grunfeld approach. Chapters 1 & 2(1.d4 Nf6, 2.c4 g6, 3.Nc3 d5, 4.cxd5, Nxd5, 5.e4 Bg7). Chapter 3 (5.e4 Nxc36.bxc3 Bg7). Chapter 4 (4.Nf3 Bg7). Chapter 5 (4.Bf4 Bg7) and Chapter 6(3.Nf3 Bg7, 4.g3 c6, 5.Bg2 d5). Sorry for the technical jargon, but whowants to buy an opening book without at least knowing the types ofpositions that may arise after the first few moves? I have turned downseveral books due to the lack of opening description. I hope this helps. ... Read more

6. Karpov on Karpov: A Memoirs of a Chess World Champion
by Anatoly Karpov
 Hardcover: 8 Pages (1992-01)
list price: US$24.95 -- used & new: US$25.00
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: 0689120605
Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars
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Customer Reviews (3)

5-0 out of 5 stars Successful Autobiography
Karpov explains himself. He recounts the pivotal events of his chess career. I was impressed by how honest the writing was, what pure insights into how Karpov's mind works. A relatively easy read without being pointlessly simple. This is a great book for someone who wants 5-10 hours of light reading, espescially for chess players!

5-0 out of 5 stars A wonderful insight
In his autobiography Karpov details everything from his early childhood to his rivalries with Korchnoi and Kasparov. The fluency of the book, however, is flawed and there is a virtual chasm between his childhood and rest-of-life. That said, I think this is one of the best autobiographies I've ever read. Karpov tells about his spiritual approach to the game, his gentle and kind personality, and most importantly, his match with Korchnoi.
To be honest, I think that the description of the match with Korchnoi (actually all their matches) is one of the best passages in a book I've read yet. The absolutely intense labor, momentum of the match, and conspiracies surrounding all of his games are fascinating and intriguing. If you are going to buy a book on Karpov or any autobiography, but this one.

4-0 out of 5 stars Near Masterpiece
The first half of this book is startlingly well written, literary, and even sometimes quite humorous, as when Karpov recounts the story about his mother checking up on him after he had been forbidden to think about chess.As the book nears the present, however, Karpov loses the thread of his own story and begins to wander (some would put it stronger than that) in his analysis of Kasparov and their bitter rivalry.One wishes, therefore, that Karpov had waited til he was well into his 50's before attempting the sort thing he tries here; because his childhood is recalled with vivid insight and the point of view that emerges is astonishing: he just happened to find himself World Champion one day!On the other hand, I can easily imagine chess players not liking this book at all since it has no chess games in it; but that really doesn't matter if one is fascinated by the subject (as I am).I only mention the fact to warn people who might be expecting something other than what they will find here: an autobiography.That said, this is a very good book from the former World Champion which ends with him hopefully predicting his future re-claiming of the world title (the book came out in 1990).You can read that last part any way you like or ignore it, but there it is: Karpov is a romantic who had to somehow make his way through the demi-human universe of Soviet Chess.A number of fans will undoubtedly disagree with this assessment, but one can tell when someone is lying about the unacceptable deeds of their past: Karpov's memoir is, therefore, touching at times, as his telling of the events surrounding the aborted match with Fischer amply demonstrates....I recomend this book to anyone who has a heart, and, wants to know more about the history of the royal game in our times. ... Read more

7. How to Play the English Opening (Batsford Chess Books)
by Anatoly Karpov
Paperback: 144 Pages (2007-10-01)
list price: US$21.95 -- used & new: US$9.96
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: 0713490659
Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars
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Editorial Review

Product Description

The English Opening (1.c4) got its name because it was first used in international competition by an Englishman: 19th-century world chess champion Howard Staunton. But it achieved the great popularity it enjoys today with the help of a Russian: the author of this definitive book, former world champion Anatoly Karpov. Among its advantages, as Karpov demonstrates, is that it can transpose into many other openings, including the Queen’s Gambit Declined, the Reti, the Caro-Kann, the Sicilian with colors reversed, or the Polish—any one of which may provide a winning edge by leading an opponent into unfamiliar territory. This kind of flexibility is what every player needs, and Karpov provides it with a thoroughness no one else could possibly match.
... Read more

Customer Reviews (5)

3-0 out of 5 stars Not impressed.
This book is basically a compilation of 30 games from 1987 on. As other reviewers had pointed out, some common responses to the English Opening were not included. So, it is obviously a supplement to one's chess library and not an encyclopedia on the English Opening.

While it is almost always fun and productive to read a super-grandmaster's thoughts on historical games, I am not particularly impressed by this volume for two reasons.

First, Karpov did not bother to check every variation within his comments. There are therefore some clearly bad moves being suggested. For examples, in the first game, on page 10, he referred to the following line as "interesting": 19...Rxe4!? 20 Bxe4 f5! 21 Bf3 Nd4 22 dxc4 Bxf3 23 exf3 e2 24 Rfe1 Qxc4. In fact, 22 Bd5! is a far better move for white. Any computer chess engine would have picked up this point had Karpov cared to check. This is not just a trivial difference of opinions because it basically invalidates the 19...Rxe4 option for black. The whole paragraph should not have been there.

Second, Karpov's narrative was aimed at documenting the evolution of what he considered the state of the art of English Opening between 1987 and 2003. While this may be of interest to chess historians, it leaves most readers unfulfilled. Common variations at the club level are not touched upon at all, and the focus is instead on subtleties at 20+ moves into the game. In short, this book is for players rated at 2000+. Mere mortals will not get much out of it.

5-0 out of 5 stars A Great Book for any Player!
Firstly, this book is very good for both white and black. Also, this book doesn't contain any complex 20 move analysis that is hard to understand. In fact, the annotations are very good for any player, and, because of the positional nature of the English Opening, neither side really ever needs to know any lines at all. The book is more geared towards gaining an understanding of the positions, not memorizing lines. That way, when you sit down to play this opening, you don't have to be thinking 'What does the book tell me to do in this position?'. Instead, you can be able to figure it out yourself, choosing a variaty of plans shown in the book. Finally, it should be noted that this contains far more than the thirty games advertised. For every game there is usually at least one 'side game' that presents an alternative to what was played in the game. Highly recommended!

5-0 out of 5 stars A lot of chess wisdom, an enjoyable read
I enjoyed this book a lot, and will be reading it a second time. It gives you an insight into an opening that the author, one of the greatest chess players of all time, clearly loves deeply. I particularly enjoyed reading how this opening developed over the years that Karpov was engaged in epic battles with Kasparov. The book also provides you with a bit of a behind the scenes of how the great players prepare for combat, with dedicated researchers and similar.

Before purchasing this book though, it is important to understand what it is, and what it is not. This book is not:

1. an English opening system (like Kolsten's "Dynamic English"),
2. an upto date theoretical tomb on the English
3. a guide as to what variations to play.

This book will be of interest to players, black or white, who want to:

1. gain better understanding of the types of positions and games that specific c4 lines lead too - e.g. 1. c4 e5, 2. Nc3...
2. gain insight into the hedgehog and other symmetrical lines (that can also arise from 1. Nf3)
3. are building a classical English defence against c4 (i.e. e5 or c5)
4. would like some understanding on how great players learn by imprinting critical games in their minds
5. enjoy reading a true great of the game describe classic battles

The chess lines in this book can transpose into d4 openings. I have come to the conclusion, that the reality is, that to play chess for "an advantage" in the opening, a price to be paid is that transpositions can occur. No 1 book can cover off the English and all these transpositions, unless one is willing to compromise with a set system (e.g. Kolsten's 2. g3). Set systems can work, but are not for everyone (they can ultimately get a bit dull, at least for me).

If you want to play English lines like the four knights, or too augment a d4 repertoire with some anti-nimzo lines or similar, this book is useful, but will need to be supplemented with a more theoretical book (I have Vladimir Bagirov's books - although I guess they are probably out of date).

So with that said - I really do love this book. If you like chess, for the sake of chess, and are not looking for someone to tell you what to play, but rather to read a Grandmaster describing what he played, and the struggle over English variations during his time at the top, all you will enjoy this book a lot.

5-0 out of 5 stars deep thought
A quick view of this book says much about thedeep thought wich Karpov and his co-Author usually apply in their works.

4-0 out of 5 stars Good but missing a few items
If you are interested in this book at all it is because you want to learn more about the English Chess Opening.From a white or black side.

This book is good for that purporse. It will give you good positional ideas about the English.The book contains 30 well anotated games. Karpov is sharing his knowledge about this opening to you.

Here are the drawbacks to this book.
1. It says nothing about what you should do if black plays a 1. c4 c6 (slav) or 1. c4 e6 (queens gambit).If you play the English you need to know what to do here.(probably even need to study the Dutch opening also)You will get these replies from black alot, trust me.

2. Alot of the games are 10 years old or older.Now true it seems like all the Super GMs play nothing more than Petrof, Slav, and Ruy Lopez these days.But I would of wish for some more modern games.

But if you want a good positional understanding of 1.c4 c5 or 1.c4 e5, this is a good book. ... Read more

8. Diary of a Chess Queen
by Alexandra Kosteniuk
Paperback: 244 Pages (2009)
-- used & new: US$19.99
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: B00312ON70
Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars
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Editorial Review

Product Description
ISBN-10: 0979148278Language: EnglishISBN-13: 9780979148279Format: PaperbackPublication Year: 2009 Womens World Chess Champion Alexandra Kosteniuk chronicles her rise to the top of the chess world in this introspective autobiographical work. Drawing from personal diaries kept during her youth, Kosteniuk takes the reader from the very dawn of her career as a child star in Russia, through triumph and disappointment, and finally to the pinnacle of success on the black-and-white battlefield. Along the way, we are treated to much more than an inside look into how a grandmaster approaches the royal game: we also learn the unique challenges posed to a young woman pulled at once by the diverging demands of professional chess, the glamour of the modeling lifestyle, and the joys of love and family life. Part memoir and travelogue, part game collection, Diary of a Chess Queen features a selection of 64 annotated games with a wide range of world-class competitors, including male super-GM Sergey Karjakin and former female world champions Zhu Chen and Antoaneta Stefanova. Fashion model, wife and mother, Alexandra Kosteniuk became the female European chess champion in 2004 and the Russian womens titleholder in 2005, then prevailed in the final match for the womens world championship in 2008. ... Read more

Customer Reviews (18)

5-0 out of 5 stars Extraordinary Book by a Multi-Talented Champion!
This is a great book for any chess fan. Every page is a glimpse into the life of a world champion written in a style to make you feel she is telling you her story while seated across the table. This would be a great gift for any young person interested in chess and especially inspirational for a young girl. Much advice is given such as how studying other subjects like a second language is useful to develop the memory of a chess player; how to best use blitz games on the internet to improve; studying "good old" chess literature; and so much, much more! The book contains 64 games nicely annotated with her thoughts and insights into the positions. Fascinating was the description of reactions during a game when she suddenly noticedshe had missed seeing her opponent's blunder which would have allowed an immediate win. Such descriptions, comments about her personal life, and numerous photos add a wonderful human touch to the book. A nice addition to any chess library!

5-0 out of 5 stars The education of a grandmaster
The Russian school of chess... the Russian chess tradition... these terms did not really mean much to someone who was not a chess professional or a chess connoisseur, even if I had followed chess for so many years and admired figures like Tal or Kasparov... it was not until I read Kosteniuk's book that I came to see what those notions really mean: a life dedicated to chess in the context of a whole society that is passionate about chess, where chess training and practices are held in the highest steem and the time spent studying chess is not constantly questioned as an absurdity. Kosteniuk's very enjoyable book brought these insights and many others that make me appreciate chess even more... for that I am very grateful to her and wish her continued success!!

5-0 out of 5 stars In the mold of The Life and Games of Mikhail Tal
The structural layout of Alexandra's book very much resembles Tal's classic, "The Life and Games of Mikhail Tal." Kosteniuk's book is, like Tal's work, an autobiography. There is much prose (normally at the beginning of each chapter). She starts at her childhood, and takes the reader right up to (and a bit past!) her 2008 World Championship match. Many game fragments are sprinkled throughout each chapter, as well as a substantial number of full-length, annotated games. Alexandra's writing is easily accessible to players of every skill level, whether they be young, old, beginners or masters. I found that she mixed the number of variations and explanations evenly. Since Alexandra typically plays a slashing, aggressive brand of chess, the games are never boring! Also, the translation (sometimes a problem in chess books) made the English read naturally (shout out to the translator, fellow Michigander Jim Marfia!!). She drops various tips and tricks of the Grandmaster trade along the way. The Women's World Champ clearly invested alot of time and effort into writing this book. I wonder if she'll write another some day?

So to sum up, "Diary of a Chess Queen," is a very interesting read, and you probably won't be disappointed if you purchase it.

5-0 out of 5 stars Excellent!
I bought this book for my son. He really loves it. Alexandra does a great job promoting chess. This is a great book for beginners, as well as experienced players. The annotations and photographs make this book a real bargin. I am a class A/B player (B right now). If you like chess, or would like to learn more about it, get this book. I for one, would love to see more women playing. I plan to get another copy for my daughter.

5-0 out of 5 stars Inspiring Biography
This is a very inspirational biography. I admire her dedication and persistance on the journey that led to her success. She is able to balance chess, family, health and fitness, and personal life all at the same time which is something so few of us can do. I would also say that her dvd's also are a big help in improving your chess playing skills as she explains in detail so much information to make you better. -Thank you Alexandra for the inspiration. ... Read more

9. The Semi-Open Game in Action: Intermediate Level (MacMillan Chess Library)
by Anatoly Karpov
 Paperback: Pages (1988-12)
list price: US$14.95 -- used & new: US$17.95
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: 002021801X
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10. Anatoly Karpov's Games as World Champion 1975-1977 (A Batsford chess book)
by Anatoly Karpov
 Hardcover: 221 Pages (1978)

Isbn: 0713402261
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15. The Closed Openings in Action (MacMillan Chess Library)
by Anatoly Karpov
 Paperback: 126 Pages (1990-02)
list price: US$14.95
Isbn: 0020339852
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16. Karpov's Caro Kann: Panov's Attack (Batsford Chess Books)
by Anatoly Karpov
Paperback: 244 Pages (2006-08-01)
list price: US$22.95 -- used & new: US$12.44
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: 071349011X
Average Customer Review: 2.0 out of 5 stars
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Editorial Review

Product Description

The great Anatoly Karpov, considered the best positional player in chess history, has been a major force in the chess world through the greater part of three decades. Now he shares his profound opening knowledge in an indispensable pair of authoritative books devoted to the Caro Kann. In this volume, Karpov, a lifelong adherent of the Caro Kann, shows how Black can not only survive White’s aggression in the open lines of the Panov, but counterpunch and dominate the opening. He selects and analyzes the many lines which provide Black not only with security but also with active play.

... Read more

Customer Reviews (1)

2-0 out of 5 stars A disappointment, maybe useful for specialists
I very much liked the first volume in this series, but by comparison to the volume on the advance and gambit lines, this book is a huge disapointment. When I opened the book, i looked for comments on the lines I play most as black, and discovered they weren't covered. This was amazing, since I play the main lines!

In all likelihood, Mikhail Podgaets is the principal author; his name appears on the cover under Karpov's. When Karpov co-authored The Caro-Kann in Black and White with Beliavsky, the first thing he covered under the Panov was a transposition into "The Karpov Variation" of the Nimzo. The transposition isn't even mentioned in this book. How likely is it, if Karpov were the primary author, that he would ignore the Karpov variation, especially as it's his preferred choice against the Panov? (Incidentally, it's well covered in Hansen's book on the Rubenstein)

In the preface the author(s) state(s) that variations characteristic of other openings would not be covered. What's really poor is that the transposition points aren't even identified, and the Panov is largely about the transpositions.

There are other gigantic gaps: in the good but fairly limited repertoire book "Easy Guide to the Panov" Agaard gives two chapters on what he identifies as the most popular lines in the Panov, (linew in the B-b4 Panov where black captures on c4 and castles. Thess lines, used by Karpov, go unmentioned. In the Steiner, the line where white takes twice on d5 and black recaptures with the queen is given, a less popular line, popular in the former USSR, but not used by Karpov, and one which is essentially a QGA. But the much more popular knight recapture is ignored.

Lots of the stuff in the book is high quality,( hence the two stars rather than one) and it will probably be useful to those who specialize in the Caro-Kann,(for instance the Steiner queen capture line has better coverage here than in anything else I've seen) but as an overall guide it's totally inadequate, and someone taking up the opening - particularly as white- would be better served by almost anything else. ... Read more

17. Chess and the Art of Negotiation: Ancient Rules for Modern Combat
by Anatoly Karpov, Jean-Fran Phelizon, Bachar Kouatly
Hardcover: 128 Pages (2006-09-30)
list price: US$34.95 -- used & new: US$20.97
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: 0275990656
Average Customer Review: 3.0 out of 5 stars
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Product Description

Negotiations and other business maneuvers are like chess: every move generates a plethora of potential next moves. In Chess and the Art of Negotiation, a world-renowned chess master and a CEO of a global company join forces and apply the principles of chess to illuminate the dynamics of competition and negotiation—from angling for a promotion to landing the sale. In a colorful interview format, the authors argue that strategy drives tactics, and understanding the motivations behind your opponent's strategy will help you navigate your way through the labyrinth of possibilities. Drawing from their own experiences in chess and business, as well as many historical and contemporary examples, the authors offer insight into the strategic mindset and how to apply it to any kind of negotation or competitive situation. Not for the faint of heart, Chess and the Art of Negotiation assumes that in business, as in any game, there are winners and losers, and aims to help you prepare for combat and emerge victorious, not vanquished.

Chess is like an intellectual labyrinth; whenever you open a door, you find yourself facing ten new doors. Negotiations and other business maneuvers are similar; each decision or action generates new opportunities. And, like chess, it is more important to determine the paths not taken. As Richard Nixon taught us: Always know ahead of time what you don't want. In Chess and the Art of Negotiation, a world-renowned chess master and a CEO of a global company combine forces and apply the principles of chess to illuminate the dynamics of competition, strategy and negotiation, whether angling for a promotion, beating your arch rival to a lucrative contract, or landing the sale.

In a colorful interview format, the authors argue that it is not enough to be well prepared or well informed, nor is it sufficient to be trained in only the tactical aspects of engagement. Strategy drives tactics, and understanding the motivations behind your opponent's strategy will help you navigate your way through the labyrinth. Drawing from their own experiences in chess and in business, as well as many historical and contemporary examples, the authors offer insight into the strategic mindset and how to apply it to any kind of negotiation or competitive situation. Not for the faint of heart, Chess and the Art of Negotiation assumes that in business, as in any game, there are winners and losers, and aims to help you prepare for combat and emerge victorious, not vanquished.

... Read more

Customer Reviews (3)

3-0 out of 5 stars Callow Cullumny or Mature Thought?

A sports headline in The Rocky Mountain News from September 24, 2006, read, "Belichick Blinks First in Chess Match between Masterminds." The article covered the previous night's Denver Bronco's defeat of the New England Patriots. In the article, we learn how Belichick, the head coach for the Patriots, implemented their no-huddle offense too early in the football game: "In a chess match between the two top coaches in the NFL, Belichick took out his queen too early and paid the price... Belichick's boys lost the element of surprise."

Say what? Any serious chess player can tell you that moving your queen too early will often result in the loss of flexibility, not the element of surprise. All too often the media flippantly compare chess players to football coaches, baseball managers, politicians, lawyers, business men - you name it; and these metaphors work not because of their accuracy but merely because of their utility. The equally naïve public doesn't understand chess well enough to notice the inconsistencies. Chess players do, however, and from a chess player's perspective it would be refreshing to see chess as a metaphor discussed with more accuracy and sophistication than it normally receives from the media.

In the book, Chess and the Art of Negotiation (Praeger; $34.95), which is an English translation of the French Psychologie de la Bataille (Economica, 2004), Anatoly Karpov and Jean-Francois Phelizon (President and CEO of Saint-Gobain Corporation) do just that. The book is a compelling question and answer session moderated by Bachar Kouatly, editor of the French chess magazine Europe Echecs. In it, the three authors discuss the similarities and differences between chess play and business negotiation. Along the way, they digress to such topics as sports, philosophy, psychology, politics, and war - each tangent a clinic on the correct way to handle chess as a metaphor. Despite the book's short length (a mere 125 pages), and Karpov's attempt to misrepresent certain historic facts in his favor, its uncommon dialogue format as well as its bold attempt to tackle a difficult subject make it a unique item.

The book is loosely organized around what is considered to be three fundamental types of engagement: direct, indirect, and lateral. According to the authors, direct engagement is equivalent to an attack without discretion, a traditional offensive maneuver; indirect engagement is more subtle, one that forces an opponent to use his own strength against himself (like in Judo or Sumo wrestling); lateral engagement is even more aberrant - leading your opponent astray so that he loses morale or loses faith in his ability to win (usually done through psychological means). Karpov and Phelizon discuss, in detail, how each type of engagement relates to their areas of expertise. Often they compare and contrast their views, and this is where the book truly excels. Phelizon even liberally quotes Sun Tzu and texts on Eastern philosophy - all in an effort to, as the dust-jacket describes, "illuminate the dynamics of competition, strategy, and negotiation."

Why do these authors succeed at describing chess as a metaphor while other, less expert chess players, businessmen, and journalists fail? The answer lies, possibly, in the difference between expressive and receptive language. Having receptive language means that you can see a word or concept being used and understand its meaning, but you can not express thoughts using that word or concept. Having expressive language means that you can actually express ideas using that word or concept. (Here's an example courtesy of the movie Reality Bites: Define "irony." Most people can't. At best they can easily give examples of ironic events, but they cannot provide an accurate definition of the word without heading for the dictionary. The correct definition from the movie is, "When the actual meaning is the complete opposite of the literal meaning.")

Anatoly Karpov can communicate through an expressive language of chess. The poor fellow who writes for The Rocky Mountain News can't. He can only recognize a relationship between the football game he watched and his incomplete notion of chess strategy; he doesn't understand the relationship well enough to elaborate on it. This, unfortunately, to the experienced chess fan, makes the journalist's metaphor flop on the page.

One way Karpov and Phelizon demonstrate their expressive language skill is by explaining not only the intricate ways chess can be compared to life, but also why it can not. From Phelizon we learn:

...the universe of negotiation is closer to the world of chess than of war. Both adversaries must follow a certain number of rules. This is not the case in war where most normal rules are abolished and where an imperative need to kill is involved.

This is why the term `economic warfare' seems to me to be totally inappropriate. In the business world, naturally there is fighting, but there is no war. Consequently, you should never consider your adversary your enemy.

From Karpov we learn:

It is clear that chess is not a model for the military world, the business world, or the political world. Why? Because in chess, the pieces always start from the same positions...In the real world, however, it is extremely rare to find a balanced starting situation where the chances of winning for both parties are about equal.

That being said, the study of the psychology of chess can offer useful parallels in general to someone in the business of politics. First, the number of possible combinations in chess is immense...that is how things are in real life. The combinations are infinite, and situations can not be reduced to equations.

A second similarity between chess and the business world relates to the uncertainty that the protagonists face with the future...anything can happen until the scoresheet is signed.

This last point - advice to always keep an eye on the fat lady - is stressed over and over by Karpov throughout the book. He dispenses a lot of advice, actually. Some of it is profound, but a lot of it - too much, in fact - is centered on match preparation and opening preparation, topics not exactly relevant to class and club players.

Unfortunately there are other, more severe, problems. All too often, Karpov's choice of examples are questionable, and the victims of his always-superior engagement strategy (we never see him, nor Phelizon for that matter, reflect on a mistake) are usually none other than his old rivals, Korchnoi or Kasparov. This bias makes Karpov appear, more or less, like an unreliable narrator. Are his examples really the best, or does he still hold a grudge after all these years, and do we find him picking second-rate examples solely to make his enemies look bad?

At one point, the narrator asks Karpov to describe the lateral approach in chess. Karpov then goes on to give a rather involved story that describes how he seemingly maneuvered Korchnoi into playing their 1974 Candidates match in Moscow rather than in Leningrad.

Koutly: Anatoly, how do you see the lateral approach in chess?

Karpov: To answer your question, I will tell you a personal story. I happened to be pretty close to Korchnoi and his family, because for four years we both lived in Leningrad. I even had a chance to secretly help him prepare for the qualifying match for the world championships... A short time later, in 1974, I had to play an official match against Korchnoi. We disagreed on where the match should take place. I really didn't care, but I knew it was an important issue to him. Korchnoi wanted to play in Leningrad, or in a Baltic region city, Riga or Talinn. I wasn't too keen on Leningrad, since that's where Korchnoi was born, had a lot of friends, and was much better known than I...

Koutly: So what were the cities that you finally chose?

Karpov: I offered Moscow or any city in the south of the Soviet Union. The authorities realized that this match was important because the winner would play Fischer. Moscow was interested...but Korchnoi was immovable. After conceding a few points in my favor, he told me, `In exchange for all my concessions, go to Moscow and tell the minister [of Sports] you are okay with playing in Leningrad.'" And that's what I did...The minister replied that he accepted all the proposals except for the location...

Korchnoi, in his biography Chess is my Life, writes about how he defended himself from these lateral attacks:

Exploiting his privileged position, Karpov insisted on all the points that he considered necessary for him... In this situation, where I was being kicked by everyone, I had to remain myself - otherwise I would have lost the match psychologically even before it started!

This being the Soviet Union, the authorities - not the players - made the final decision to hold the match in Moscow and, in the end, Karpov and Korchnoi's negotiation amounted to very little. (Karpov won the match. Fischer resigned his title in 1975, and Karpov went on to become the 12th World Champion.) Karpov likely picked this example to show the severe impact the final outcome had on his nemesis rather than to demonstrate its cogent instructional value. In a sense, Karpov didn't answer the question.

Karpov's ego has biased the book in other ways, too. Edward Winter, the razor-tongued British critic, first pointed out serious factual errors in the French edition when he briefly reviewed it on his website (in Chess Note #4448). Winter writes about one of these errors: "An editorial footnote...gives the false impression that Kasparov lost a world championship match to Karpov in 1993." This error, as well as the others, was not corrected in this English edition, and these blatant misrepresentations are completely uncalled for. Karpov should really know better. How ironic, that in a book filled with such mature thought by this former World Champion, we are disappointed so much by his callow calumny.

Skeptics might even speculate that Karpov's whole impetus for participating in this project was that he felt compelled to keep pace with Kasparov, who was originally scheduled to come out with a business book of his own around this time. (Kasparov's book, The Attacker's Advantage: How Life Imitates Chess [Penguin], was originally scheduled for publication in the autumn of 2006, but it is now due out some time in 2007).

While Chess and the Art of Negotiation is no substitute for a more formal work on chess instruction, chess psychology, or even business negotiation, it is fine companion reading. Just don't let Karpov's sly political agenda fool you.

5-0 out of 5 stars Chess and the Art of Negotiation: Ancient Rules for Modern Combat
Business skills, negotiaton skills, psychology, art and reasoning are all interweaved beautifully to produce a masterpiece of a book. Written in the form of a dialogue amongst three people, this book is ideal for someone interested in strategy. I strongly recommend it for anyone in business, especailly those who have read - The Art Of War.

1-0 out of 5 stars A Poor Excuse for a Book on Chess or Negotiations
The less said about this potboiler, the better. It is clearly a vanity piece designed to showcase an obscure French businessman by linking him with a former world chess champion who is along for the ride.
It contains no insights into either chess or negotiations. ... Read more

18. How to Learn from Your Defeats (Macmillan Library of Chess)
by Anatoly Karpov
 Paperback: 105 Pages (1985-06)
list price: US$8.95 -- used & new: US$82.55
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: 0020114206
Average Customer Review: 1.0 out of 5 stars
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Customer Reviews (2)

1-0 out of 5 stars Perhaps The Worst Book Ever By A World Champion
Karpov doesn't show you how to learn from your defeats; he doesn't even give you a clue.Instead his method is to present a lightly annotated (or unannotated) loss followed by a lightly annotated (or unannotated) revenge win over the same opponent.This procedure is repeated until the end of this dreadful volume.

The book is so utterly useless, I suspect it was ghost-written.It's hard to imagine a player of Karpov's caliber allowing his name to be associated with it; I mean, assuming it was ghost-written, how could such an incompetent ghost have the money to get Karpov to pretend to be the author?

This book is not worth the paper it was printed on.It appears to have been written in less time than it would take to read it.

1-0 out of 5 stars Very Poor Work by Karpov
No wonder this book is not available - it is an attempt to show how we can learn from a defeat. All well and good but there is no such help here! What we have is a mishmash of games where Karpov lost and then achieved avictory against the same player. There is no relationship between openings or an attempt to take advantage of a player's style or idiosyncracies. We even have the ridiculous scenario of Karpov's particular win coming before the defeat.Might just have been named"I don't get mad I get even". ... Read more

19. Winning With the Spanish (Batsford Chess Library)
by Anatoly Karpov
 Paperback: 174 Pages (1994-05)
list price: US$16.95 -- used & new: US$10.54
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: 0805032894
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20. Chess at the Top, 1979-1984 (Pergamon Russian Chess Series)
by Anatoly Karpov
 Paperback: 194 Pages (1984-12)
list price: US$14.95
Isbn: 0080297706
Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars
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Customer Reviews (1)

5-0 out of 5 stars Staggering!
This is a great book for the student. Imagine if Capablanca could really write and put things into simple terms that the reader could understand. That is what we have here, as Karpov writes from his throne in the days when his supremacy was absolute. But he never suffered from the arrogance (at least in his writing) that plagues the literature of Capablanca and Kasparov. He tells the story of a game objectively, but chock full of high quality advice. Karpov is the best guy to study, as his games shimmer with clarity, and you can emulate his opening style. Plus, he is a modern player who studies hard, so his openings are not occasionally ridiculous, as was Capablanca's, for instance, in the first game of his disastrous match with Alekhine. He never seeks complications, but always plays solid moves from which tactics logically arise. This is a great, great book. You should certainly buy it. I also own How Karpov Wins by Mednis, Karpov's Best Games by Karpov and the 1976 collection of his games by O'Connell and Adams. I think this is the most valuable of all of them. He was at his peak and most eager to talk, and he knew he would have a legacy. ... Read more

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