The Career and Complete Games of the American World Chess Champion
by Karsten Müller
Foreword by Larry Evans
Opening Survey by Andy Soltis
408pp., SRP $39.95
The Ultimate Fischer Collection! The Publishing Event of the Decade!
The years after the Second World War saw international chess dominated by the Soviets – Botvinnik, Smyslov, Tal, Petrosian and then Spassky held the world crown, treating it as if it were almost an integral part of their heritage. There were occasional flashes of brilliance in the West – Reshevsky, Najdorf, and later Larsen – but no one really mounted a serious challenge to the Soviet hegemony.
Then, in the mid-1950s, a lone genius from Brooklyn emerged. Obsessed with chess, all his waking hours were devoted to finding truth on the 64 squares. It was an unrelenting, sometimes frustrating quest, but he persevered, eventually emerging as perhaps the greatest natural chess talent ever.
It was clear from his early years as a gifted prodigy through his stormy ascent of the Chess Olympus, no one had ever rocked the chess world quite like Bobby Fischer. His raw genius for the royal game, combined with an indefatigable will to win, made him one of the most feared chessplayers of all time – a genuine living legend.
Now, for the first time, every one of his 736 tournament and match games is presented with insightful explanations and analysis. Best-selling chess author, German International Grandmaster Karsten Müller, annotates each game of the player many believe to be the greatest of all time.
These wonderfully annotated games are supplemented by crosstables of every major tournament and match in which Fischer participated, dozens of archival photographs, along with brief comments and observations putting the play of the great champion into historical perspective.
"[A]s a one-volume compilation of all his official match and tournament games, it's the best book out there by far." –Dennis Monokroussos, ChessMind.com
"German GM Müller has annotated pretty much every single tournament game Fisher ever played that is available. Annotations are understandably not on the level of Fischer’s My 60 Memorable Games, but are often quite detailed, particularly in the endings where Müller is an acknowledged expert. The annotations include lots of explanatory prose as well as concrete variations – this is definitely not a data dump or computer analysis generated book...GMs Larry Evans and Andy Soltis provide supporting roles. Evans, Fisher’s longtime friend, occasional second and collaborator on My 60 Memorable Games, gives a personal view of Bobby from their first meeting (a car ride from Montreal to New York after the 1956 Canadian Open) to Fischer’s death. The eleven-page opening survey by Soltis is a gem...Bobby Fischer: the Career and Complete Games of the American World Chess Champion is the new standard for a one-volume work on all of Bobby’s games... John Donaldson, JeremySilman.com
"The 408-page book is a wonderful collection of 736 annotated games, crosstables, photographs and documents. GM Larry Evans, who helped Fischer write articles and his classic My 60 Memorable Games, crafted a beautiful foreword, "From Prodigy to Superstar." GM Andy Soltis, the author of the bookFischer Revisited," skillfully surveys Fischer's opening play. The book would be a gem in any chess library." Lubomir Kavalek in his review in the Washington Post
"Müller's annotations provide insight into the important ideas and key moments of each game without becoming overbearing; if you play through the entire book, you'll rarely feel lost...For fans of the only official American World Chess Champion, Bobby Fischer is a must buy, and I highly recommend it for anyone who wants a great resource for learning about the career of perhaps the most famous chess player ever. Even if you never plan to play through the book or read it for enjoyment, it has great value as a reference work for all of Fischer's games. While this may not be the only Fischer book you'll ever need, it's certainly one that belongs in every fan's collection." Edward Scimia, About.com
"Evans [who wrote the book's Introduction] actually does a fine job! He’s describing what happened in a compelling and life-like way and making a deeper point as he goes along about Fischer’s paranoia...Müller’s commentary is strictly relevant and, well, nothing else. In principle, he doesn’t indulge in many side-lines or lengthy explanations, even though I suspect it must have been hard for him to resist the temptation. Still, his method ultimately works in this book, partly because of the perfect placement of diagrams (making the book great bedside literature) and the fact that Müller draws from many sources...Even if you’ve got each and every one of his games in a database already, this modern Fischer classic belongs in your chess library." Peter Doggers, ChessVibes.com
"This is an excellent book and one which I can heartily recommend." Sean, MarshTowers.com
The book was released at the end of October in both softcover and hardcover editions. The hardcover edition was a numbered edition, limited to 500 copies. It completely sold out to dealers in four DAYS.
Amazon first announced that the book was coming in May 2009. From that time, until its actual release at the end of October, it was always in the top 100 best-selling chess books at Amazon, usually in the top 25. When it was finally released, it was #1 at Amazon for almost twelve consecutive days.
A German-language edition should be out by mid-summer, 2010.
An Italian-language edition should be out by the end of 2010.
A Spanish-language edition will be released, probably in 2011.