Review of the Shereshevsky Method


As mentioned in my earlier review for The Complete Manual of Positional Chess Volume 2 I am a pretty serious enthusiast for the Soviet School of Chess.

So when I received a copy of Mikhail Shereshevsky's new book The Shereshevky Method to Improve in Chess I was delighted. Of course I was aware of this book (I am a relatively serious collector after all) as well of the books which form the genesis of this project.

This book, presented in three parts, is mostly a compendium of two earlier works, The Soviet Chess Conveyer, and Endgame Strategy, both by the same author.

Part One is formed by one segment of The Soviet Chess Conveyor. The section on how to construct an opening repertoire.

Part Two consists of Shereshevsky's seminal work on the endgame, Endgame Strategy.

Both of those sections have been reworked as well as analyzed with engines.

So if you owned the earlier two volumes and that was all there was to this book then I'd likely tell you to pass on buying this one since there aren't enough reasons in and of themselves to justify owning a reissue like this except for perhaps the most serious collectors and improvers amongst us.

Of course I know that most people don't own the Soviet Chess Conveyor as it is not so easy to find a reasonably priced copy these days, so I think that most would still wind up wanting to pick up this book anyways.

Yet none of that matters for one simple reason. That reason is Part Three.

Part Three is called "From the 20th Century to the 21st, and it has an awful lot of absolute gems contained within. This section details the changes in chess over the past 25 years since his first works were published.

First the author starts with a segment about the current status of chess players and trainers. He speaks about the state of Russian chess and hearkens back to the former days of Soviet chess to bridge the gap. He also talks about the propriety of referring to the "Chinese School of Chess" due to the rise of starts such as Ding Liren and Wei Yi.

From there he goes on to write essays on chess books, citing works by other authors covering topics such as how to properly calculate variations, the perils of laziness at the board, the Dorfman method, and many others.

This book winds up hitting the mark on two levels. The first is that it will still function as an excellent endgame work as Part Two is an updated version of an all time classic. The second is that reading part three can inspire you to dig into the works of other authors based on the recommendations given by Shereshevsky.

Certainly worth picking up and reading. If I was to give it a start rating I'd give it four out of five stars.

Best Chess to You,

Patriarch Fan