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Weapons of Chess: An Omnibus of Chess Strategies (Fireside Chess Library) Paperback – November 15, 1989
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Top Customer Reviews
I play many openings which garner the isolated d-pawn (both with and against it) and my study of this topic in this book really helped my play in these positions. He breaks down the isolated d-pawn into strengths, weaknesses, and what to do when you have it and when you are playing against it. These sections I think are the best in the book.
The strength of this book is its simplicity. I think it is important to know the ideas (which you can gain from this book) and to see many concrete examples from master play (which you should find in other books). If you have many books on pawn structure, you may not want this book.
I found the other sections to be not as helpful, because other books I had did a sufficient job in teaching me these concepts. However, I think this is a good book for general positional ideas, particularly in the realm of pawn structures, which is an important one in chess.
I recommend this book for players under 1500. Players over 1500 may have much of this knowledge and I would recommend Silman's The Amateur's Mind to those.
The book contains a nice touch on the "use of Pawns", isolated "d" Pawns, and Pawn structures and use. Then, the use of Bishops such as the bad Bishop, Bishop pair, Bishops of opposite colors, fianchetto, etc... The use of Rooks such as doubled rook effectivelness. After this book you might consider getting "How to Reassess your Chess" by Silman as the next step, and along with this book at this level getting "Unbeatable Chess Lessons for Juniors" for nice games with important strategic concepts.
Bravo for Pandolfini on this one!
If you are already a 1500 player, this book will probably not help you much. If you are 1000 it will be divine inspiration. The truth is that Bruce Pandolfini _regularly_ churns out positively horrid books. This is one exception that should be read by any weak player....if you already know the material in this, you shouldn't be reading Pandolfini level books anyway.
By the way, this is one of the three books I recommend for players, the other two (in order of playing strength) are: Reassess your chess (Silman) Play/Think Like a grandmaster (Kotov).
This book is for the smart beginner after he has played a bit.
Differences compared to Silman's book:
1. Pandolfini emphasizes pawn structures more;
2. Silman divides his book into Opening, Middlegame, and Endgame Strategy (and a last chapter on practical matters)
3. This book is a slightly easier read than Silman's (which is also a good easy read and targeted for beginners/novices, but is probably better read after Pandolfini's, though it likely does not matter)
One thing I really enjoyed about this book is p.11 where Pandolfini lists chapters that are related and could be read together. For instance, you could read the first chapter and its sibling chapters, then read the second chapter and its sibling chpaters, then the third chapter and its sibling chapters, etc. Overall, this results in reading the book entirely approximately 3 times, good for repetition/reinforcement.
The one flaw in this book has been mentioned in other reviews...namely, the cumbersome method of verbally trying to describe a sequence of moves as opposed to the simplicity and brevity of algebraic notation...but this is forgivable.
This book will not advance a beginner's game immediately in the way that studying tactics tactics tactics will, but rather exposes the reader to a range of strategic ideas that may come up in one's games and will be read about in more detail (in more advanced books) once a basic level of tactical proficiency has been developed.
This book (along with Silman's Complete Book of Chess Strategy) is a great way for a novice to BEGIN studying strategy as a welcome diversion from primarily studying tactics and basic endgames.
Most Recent Customer Reviews
Very shoddy printing. The diagrams are blurry and range from difficult to make out to impossible. The content is very good for beginners
to intermediates, which is why I... Read more
i really love this one. it makes me more of an excellent player in chess.Published 4 months ago by Oscar Ddor
This book is a fantastic source of information, both for those who are unfamiliar with chess strategy concepts and for the more proficient players who may need a refresher on some... Read morePublished 8 months ago by Steven M.
This book is excellent for its intended audience. The intended audience is players under USCF 1200, but particularly for players under USCF 1000 (and complete beginners, if you... Read morePublished 10 months ago by David Milliern
Bruce Pandolfini was portrayed on "Seeking Bobby Fisher" as the teacher of Josh Waitzins. He seems to be one of the great chess teachers for beginning and intermediate... Read morePublished 13 months ago by Falco del Fiume
Great very simple book on chess basics (and more than that). You need no board and can just quickly read through it. Read morePublished 15 months ago by Mark Goewey