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Chess is My Life

3.9  ·  Rating Details ·  31 Ratings  ·  5 Reviews
Viktor Korchnoi's Chess is My Life was first published nearly 20 years ago; now, in a series of lengthy interviews, Korchnoi has retold the story of his life, right from the beginning. Korchnoi's memories of his childhood in Leningrad, his years at university, his rise to the top of the chess world, and the years before and after his flight to the West are an impressive a
Paperback, 176 pages
Published 1978 by B. T. Batsford Ltd.
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There's a theory that playing chess makes you paranoid. The argument is something like this: you rapidly learn that whenever your opponent makes a move, no matter how innocent it appears, you are strongly advised to think about what he is really trying to do to you. Often, you discover that there is some cleverly concealed plan you need to counteract. The problem is that this thinking can spill over into real life, which isn't a two-person zero-sum game with perfect information.

People who like t
Matthew Howard
Jul 08, 2016 Matthew Howard rated it it was amazing
Part biography, part history, and part chess instruction - Chess is My Life is your chance to learn from a master. Reading this book gave me an insight into the realities of life in the Soviet Union. In the States, we've all seen many movies about defecting Soviets. This book shows reality with the "Hollywood" stripped away.

Reading Korchnoi's accounts of his tournaments also taught me this: even with superior strategy and intellect, you can still lose if you let emotions override good judgment a
Anonymous. Anonymous.
Feb 01, 2013 Anonymous. Anonymous. rated it it was amazing
Such an interesting book. Korchnoi is a living legend, and these things did really happen. Can you even imagine being ostrasized from your own country. Your family in the custody of a government that killed millions of its own people. Having to face "the chosen one" the youth that defined communist ideals and intellect. He armed with a team that included the greatest minds in chess history. And yes, they did have a psychic there trying to intimidate Korchnoi. In Russia it was a common belief ...more
Cormac Zoso
Nov 05, 2012 Cormac Zoso rated it it was amazing
My all-time favorite player, Viktor Korchnoi. Perhaps the greatest player to never win the world championship and one of the great board battlers of all time. Never giving up and always pushing and trying to force out a win as if a draw was a mark of humiliation.

This is an old version,hardback, 1978, and covers up to 1976. His life surviving World War Two is thrilling and frightening and gives you an idea of how he learned to fight and survive. Excellent book that should be read by any chess pl
Jan 09, 2016 Bobsie67 rated it liked it
Shelves: chess
Lots of Soviet ear paranoia from Korchnoi--and he had every right to be paranoid. Clearly Tigran Petrosian was as villainous as the KGB agents sent to keep track of the Soviet players lucky enough to leave Mother Russia. Would have liked this bio to have more closely weaved the games section with the narrative. Will takes some time to really work through the terrific games collection at the end.
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