The Chess Files

The answers are out there.

By Jim Eade

If you were stranded on a desert island, and had a choice of only one out of three of the following books: a collection of mates in 2, mates in 3, or mates in 4, which one would you choose? The question occurs to me, because I recently checked out each of three such volumes edited by Bill Harvey.

The answer will depend in part on your playing strength. Mates in 2 are too easy for me to feel properly challenged, but I sometimes get frustrated working through mates in 4. Mates in 3 might be my choice.

WHITE TO MOVE - MATE IN 3  / Adolf Anderssen vs G Lepge, Leipzig 1855 / W T Harvey /

WHITE TO MOVE – MATE IN 3 / Adolf Anderssen vs G Lepge, Leipzig 1855 / W T Harvey /

If you are not an experienced player, the mates in 2 provide a wonderful training exercise. Pattern recognition plays an enormous role in chess, and it is much easier to recognize a pattern from past experience than it is to invent one in the moment.

All three volumes are well produced, contain both puzzles and solutions, and an index to the winner’s names. You can follow Bill on Facebook by searching on William Harvey, or check out his web site at wtharvey.com.

I’d recommend these volumes, even if you weren’t stranded on a desert island.

You can send your chess questions and answers to me at jeade@uschesstrust.org OR send comments and solve the puzzle by posting your comment on the website.