lundi 5 mars 2012

The art of attack in chess

Nowadays, one can easily find chess books on almost every topic: attack, endgame, tactics, on specific opening of course etc. Video lessons and databases are also popular. Having such a wide choice of material to study can be confusing. It's pretty hard to find the book thats fits our needs the best. This is why I've decided to make a serie of articles on this topic. The first book I want to talk about is a classic: The art of attack in chess, written by Vladimir Vukovic.

First of all, a few words on the author. He was born on august 26, 1898, in Zagreb, the capital of the Republic of Croatia. He was a chess player, theoretician and a player. He won the Vienna tournament in 1921 and played against the best player of the time: Alekhine, Rubinstein, Tartakower, Euwe and others. One of his notable game was against Arpad Vajda in 1925, which he brilliantly won with a well executed kingside attack. He died on  november 18, 1975, in Zagreb.
The art of attack in chess is a classic of chess litterature, and for good reasons. Vukovic explains every attacking principles in different categories, helping us to understand every key features of every attacking patterns. He goes through every subject with a concrete, easy to understand approach. Attack against the uncastled king, or against the king that has lost the right to castle are the first chapters of this book, probably because they are the funniest and easiest attack there are. Chapter 4 is a very instructive one, showing a lot of matting patterns, from very common to uncommon ones. This chapter is important to bear in mind, these patterns being pretty useful in every attack. I personnally started to conduct my attacks more precisely after reading this book, winning more games. I recommand reading it a few times to digest the information more easily. The only drawback of this book is that Vukovic made quite a few mistakes in his analysis, a few ones being pretty obvious. John Nunn republished the book, correcting these analysis with the help of computer showing that Vukovic' basic ideas were right, even if he miscalculated some variations. Every chapters of the book contain a lot of examples, with lots of commentaries and variations to support them.

To conclude, I would recommand this book to any players, between 1500 and the master level, who wish to raise their attacking skills to the next level. The patterns he teaches in this book are easy to understand and help to get better practical results. This is a "must have" book!

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