Hobbies & Leisure time

Alexander Alekhine’s Best Games: Algebraic edition (Batsford Chess) by Alexander Alekhine, Garry Kasparov

Across the Board: The Mathematics of Chessboard Problems by John J. Watkins

A History of Chess: The Original 1913 Edition by H.J.R. Murray

The Art of Checkmate: new translation with algebraic chess notation (Batsford Chess) by Georges Renaud, Victor Kahn

Christine Garwood, “Flat Earth: The History of an Infamous Idea”

Alexander Alekhine’s Best Games: Algebraic edition (Batsford Chess) by Alexander Alekhine, Garry Kasparov

Alekhine’s games and writings inspired me from an early age…I fell inlove with the rich complexity of his ideas at the chessboard… I hope readers of this book will feel similarly inspired by Alekhine’s masterpieces. From the foreword by Garry Kasparov Alexahnder Alekhine captivated the chess world with his dazzling combatitive play. His genius has been a strong influence on every great player since, none more so than Garry Kasparov. This book contains a selection of the very best of Alekhine’s annotation of his own games, converted to algebraic by John Nunn. These games span his career from the early encounters with Lasker, Tarrasch and Rubenstein, through his world title battles, to his meetings with the new generation of players who were to dominate chess in the 1950s.

Across the Board: The Mathematics of Chessboard Problems by John J. Watkins

cross the Board is the definitive work on chessboard problems. It is not simply about chess but the chessboard itself–that simple grid of squares so common to games around the world. And, more importantly, the fascinating mathematics behind it. From the Knight’s Tour Problem and Queens Domination to their many variations, John Watkins surveys all the well-known problems in this surprisingly fertile area of recreational mathematics. Can a knight follow a path that covers every square once, ending on the starting square? How many queens are needed so that every square is targeted or occupied by one of the queens?

Each main topic is treated in depth from its historical conception through to its status today. Many beautiful solutions have emerged for basic chessboard problems since mathematicians first began working on them in earnest over three centuries ago, but such problems, including those involving polyominoes, have now been extended to three-dimensional chessboards and even chessboards on unusual surfaces such as toruses (the equivalent of playing chess on a doughnut) and cylinders. Using the highly visual language of graph theory, Watkins gently guides the reader to the forefront of current research in mathematics. By solving some of the many exercises sprinkled throughout, the reader can share fully in the excitement of discovery.

Showing that chess puzzles are the starting point for important mathematical ideas that have resonated for centuries, Across the Board will captivate students and instructors, mathematicians, chess enthusiasts, and puzzle devotees.

A History of Chess: The Original 1913 Edition by H.J.R. Murray

An epic work that took more than a decade to complete, A History of Chess, originally published in 1913, is a historic undertaking that shattered preconceptions about the game upon publication. Over a century later, Murray’s research and conclusions, in which he argues that chess originated in India, are still widely accepted by most chess historians.

Undertaking such a pioneering task, the scope of which has never been attempted before or since, Murray taught himself to read Arabic in order to decipher historical manuscripts on the game and its beginnings. His study unravels the history of the game as it evolved from its Asiatic beginnings, through the role chess played in Europe during the Middle Ages, and up until the nineteenth century with the arrival of modern chess as we know it.

A History of Chess includes transcribed diagrams of important games, as well as some of the more famous historical chess figurines, such as the Lewis chessmen. No single work on the game of chess has become close to touching Murray’s in breadth or significance.

The Art of Checkmate: new translation with algebraic chess notation (Batsford Chess) by Georges Renaud, Victor Kahn

One of the most popular and enduring chess books of all time finally gets the English-language edition it deserves—with algebraic notation for the very first time! When it originally appeared in the 1950s, The Art of Checkmate was marred by a careless and mistake-filled translation. This new version accurately reflects the authors’ stellar work, including fresh analysis and text missing from previous publications. It presents the basic patterns of checkmate, explanations of how to carry them out, examples from regular play, and test-yourself puzzle positions to reinforce Renaud and Kahn’s valuable unmatched information. Never before has it been clearer why so many players consider this a favorite, and put it on their top-ten lists.

Christine Garwood, “Flat Earth: The History of an Infamous Idea”

Contrary to popular belief fostered in countless school classrooms the world over, Christopher Columbus did not discover that the earth was round. The idea of a spherical world had been widely accepted in educated circles from as early as the fourth century b.c. Yet, bizarrely, it was not until the supposedly more rational nineteenth century that the notion of a ?at earth really took hold. Even more bizarrely, it persists to this day, despite Apollo missions and widely publicized pictures of the decidedly spherical Earth from space.

Based on a range of original sources, Garwood’s history of ?at-Earth beliefs–-from the Babylonians to the present day–-raises issues central to the history and philosophy of science, its relationship to religion and the making of human knowledge about the natural world. Flat Earth is the ?rst de?nitive study of one of history’s most notorious and persistent ideas, and it evokes all the intellectual, philosophical, and spiritual turmoil of the modern age. Ranging from ancient Greece, through Victorian England, to modern-day America, this is a story that encompasses religion, science, and pseudoscience, as well as a spectacular array of people and places. Where else could eccentric aristocrats, fundamentalist preachers, and conspiracy theorists appear alongside Copernicus, Newton, and NASA, except in an account of such a legendary misconception?

Thoroughly enjoyable and illuminating, Flat Earth is social and intellectual history at its best.