By David Shenk
Chess is the main enduring and common online game in heritage. the following, bestselling writer David Shenk chronicles its exciting saga, from historic Persia to medieval Europe to the dens of Benjamin Franklin and Norman Schwarzkopf. alongside the best way, he examines a unmarried mythical video game that came about in London in 1851 among masters of the time, and relays his personal makes an attempt to turn into as expert as his Polish ancestor Samuel Rosenthal, a nineteenth-century champion. With its combination of cultural heritage and Shenk’s own curiosity, The Immortal online game is a compelling advisor for beginners and aficionados alike.
From Publishers Weekly
Those eager about chess and wishing to profit extra in regards to the video game (but now not an excessive amount of extra) will welcome this obtainable, nontechnical creation. Shenk (The Forgetting) succinctly surveys the game's historical past from its origins in 5th- or sixth-century Persia as much as the current, touching alongside the way in which on such matters as his personal amateurish pursuit of the sport, erratic geniuses like Paul Morphy and Bobby Fischer, chess in faculties this day, desktop chess and his great-great-grandfather Samuel Rosenthal, who was once an eminent participant in past due 19th-century Europe. to intensify the drama, Shenk intersperses the textual content with the strikes of the so-called "immortal game," an excellent instance of "romantic" chess performed among Adolf Anderssen and Lionel Kieseritzky in London in 1851. Appendixes comprise transcripts of 5 different nice video games, in addition to Benjamin Franklin's short essay "The Morals of Chess." Readers will come clear of this wonderful e-book with a powerful experience of why chess has remained so well known over the a while and why its learn nonetheless has a lot to inform us concerning the workings of the human brain. 50 b&w illus. (Sept.)
From Bookmarks Magazine
David Shenk is the writer of 4 past books, together with The Forgetting, an acclaimed learn of Alzheimer's, and information Smog, approximately info overload within the web age. the best asset of The Immortal online game is its accessibility. via an informed layperson's wisdom of chess, Shenk specializes in his subject's extra fascinating issues and leaves arcane rehashes of recognized video games for extra technical texts. (An appendix obliges those that enjoy such details.) At its most attractive, the ebook meditates at the ways in which chess can enhance lives. Given its brevity, Shenk's review occasionally sacrifices intensity to insurance, even though such an strategy slightly decreases the excitement even an "wood-pusher"—chess slang for a vulnerable player—might remove from this passionate and well-researched history.
Versatile writer Shenk has conceived a shiny inspiration for marching in the course of the historical past of chess. His name a double entendre, Shenk alternates narrative passages at the historical lineage of chess with move-by-move research of a staggering 1851 contest that lore has dubbed "the immortal game." Shenk can be an Everyman-guide, and his perspective is person who many readers will share--he is interested in the game's limitless probabilities but in addition intimidated through its tough physique of analytic wisdom. attempting to grasp chess has deranged various, corresponding to artist Marcel Duchamp and previous champion Bobby Fischer, however it has additionally given nice excitement to others, comparable to Benjamin Franklin. looking a explanation for the recognition of chess from its Persian and Indian origins 1,500 years in the past to the current, Shenk makes a decision it lies in chess' fluidity as metaphor. It used to be evidently conceived as a battle video game, yet feudal eu society discovered deeper meanings inside it, as cognitive psychologists and logicians do this day. Rangy, anecdotal, and nontechnical, Shenk's is renowned chess background at its so much readable. Gilbert Taylor
"Elegant . . . a real page-turner, and an exceptional creation to the sport of chess."—Wall road Journal“Clear, dependent, refined and simple to appreciate. . . . simply the object to get you within the thrall of this historical game.” —Los Angeles Times“Shenk, a spry writer....[offers] a powerful case for the game’s bewitching power.” —The big apple occasions e-book Review“Fresh and fascinating...a world-spanning tale [Shenk] relates with ability and verve.” —Chicago Sun-Times