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10 Best Books & Courses to Learn From Chess Masters' Games

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Best chess books recommendations for those who like to see chess while drinking coffee

Watching chess games and learning from them is one of the best ways to improve in chess. Various best chess books and courses of annotated chess games will help you learn the concepts quickly.
This article will show eight books and courses highly recommended for every chess player. These books are suitable for anyone up to a 2200 rating.

Why is game analysis essential?

Watching your own games, as well as watching top players’ games and analyzing them, is very important for everyone. Analyzing helps you to understand more and more positions easily. When you watch top players’ commentary or read a book, you understand various stories, chess variations, traps, etc.
Here are some benefits of game analysis

  • You will learn how to tackle different positions.
  • You will get knowledge about time management.
  • You learn your and your opponent’s mistakes.
  • To learn about opening mistakes and essential improvement scope.

How to study annotated Games?

Usually, studying annotated chess games is a tedious task. But if you want to improve, you should study it on the board. The first step is to set up a chess board and have a chess book with you. Then select a game of your favorite chess player or opening.
Start watching the game. If you found some exciting positions, analyze them with yourself. Most of the positions in deeply annotated games are already analyzed. You can also try to find moves which these players played in the game.
Don’t forget to miss any part of the analysis.

Best books and courses of annotated chess games

1- My 60 Memorable Games by Bobby Fischer

This book is written by World Champion Bobby Fischer. In his book, he analyzed the 60 best games in his career. This is one of the best chess books which is written by any world champion.
This book was originally published in 1969. After some controversies regarding changes in the book, this book was finally reprinted in 2008 after changing the notation format.
I got this book when I was 13 years old. My coach suggested me to watch all the games.
Buy Now on Amazon

2- My great predecessors series by Garry Kasparov

This is 5 part series written by former World Chess Champion Garry Kasparov. In this series, he analyzed the games of all world champions. Part 1 features GM Alexander Alekhine, GM Emanuel Lasker, GM Jose Capablanca and GM Wilhelm Steinitz.
2nd part features GM Max Euwe, GM Mikhail Botvinnik, GM Vassily Smyslov, and GM Mikhail Tal.
3rd part features GM Tigran Petrosian and GM Boris Spassky. The fourth part is entirely featured by GM Bobby Fischer.
This series is one of the most famous chess series ever written. In each book, Garry analyzes games and talks about their culture, history, and politics.
After this success, he also wrote the series Garry Kasparov, on Garry Kasparov, which consists of 3 parts.
Buy Now on Amazon

3- Zurich International Chess Tournament, 1953

This book is dedicated to the Zurich International Chess Tournament, which happened in Zurich in 1953. This tournament has created many chess masterpieces that every chess player must analyze. This book is highly recommended for every chess player. There are 210 games played in this tournament which David Bronstein briefly analyzes.
I attended a Grandmaster camp back in 2018 and the coach suggested this book.
I recommend this for 1800+ players or for someone who likes to analyze chess games a lot. For others, this book might be boring.
Buy Now on Amazon

4- The Mammoth Book of the World’s Greatest Chess Games

This book consists of the 125 greatest chess games of all time, selected, analyzed, re-evaluated, and explained by top-level British chess players. This book is huge, with 704 pages. This book is recommended for everyone below the 2000 rating. This book is written by highly popular Grandmasters Dr. John Nunn and John Emms. Somehow the price of this book is quite low compared to the value it brings.
Recommended for players up to 2000
Buy Now on Amazon

5- 100 Classical Attacking Games (Video Course)


This is one of the best chess courses I have ever seen. This course is created by GM Avetik Grigoryan and GM Gabuzyan Hovhannes by ChessMood. In this course, both GMs analyzed attacking games. ChessMood claims the following features of this course

  • Techniques for building your attack with clever maneuvers to finish the games with sacrifices.
  • How to attack your opponent’s king against various openings.
  • Attacking strategies by many world champions.

On Thanksgiving day, I got a 6-month gift membership from ChessMood and because of that, I watched multiple videos of it.
They have unlocked all the courses for the next few days and you can watch them for free. (25-27th April 2024)
Watch this course on ChessMood

6- 100 Classical Masterpieces (Video Course)

This course is also created by the chessmood team. This series covers the 100 most instructive chess games ever. They have chosen games from which there are some takeaways. The authors also ask questions many times.
You will learn the following things from the course.

  • How do you win winning positions and save lost ones?
  • Middlegame and opening ideas and concepts
  • How to apply this concept in real games
  • How top chess players think and implement strategies.

They have unlocked all the courses for the next few days and you can watch them for free (25-27th April 2024)
Watch this course on ChessMood

7- Boris Gelfand Chess Books Series

This is a very high-level series written by Boris Gelfand and recommended for 1800/2000+ players. This series is divided into four parts: Positional Play, Dynamic Play, Technical Play, and Major Piece Endgame Play. In all 4 books, he analyzed various games and positions in depth. Sometimes the depth is so high, it becomes tedious to read everything (That's just my opinion). But I almost finished reading Dynamic Chess and it helped me a lot.
Buy Now on Amazon

8- Capablanca's best chess endgames by Irving Chernev

This book is your guide to mastering chess endgames, the final stage where only the most crucial pieces remain.
Legendary player José Raúl Capablanca believed endgames were the most important part of chess. Unlike other chess books, this one focuses on Capablanca's actual games, not theoretical problems.
By studying 60 of Capablanca's most amazing victories, you'll see how he used his intuition, tactics, and strategy to win. The book explains his moves throughout the game but especially focuses on the brilliant endgames that sealed his victories.
Buy Now on Amazon

9- Chess Structure A Grandmaster Guide by Mauricio Flores Rios

This chess book, "Chess Structures: A Grandmaster Guide," by Mauricio Flores Rios, dives deep into the 28 most common pawn formations you'll encounter during chess games.
Inside you'll find:

  • Real games that showcase the key ideas and strategies for each pawn structure.
  • Important patterns to look for and common mistakes to avoid.
  • 50 practice puzzles to test your understanding of positional chess.

Buy Now on Amazon

10- Python Strategy

This book is your guide to the brilliant chess moves of Tigran Petrosian, a legendary chess champion. Even though Petrosian was known for playing safe and sometimes drawing games, this book focuses on his most creative and attacking games.
Grandmasters like Garry Kasparov credit Petrosian's games with helping them improve their own chess.
A few of my friends studied this book and they said it helped a lot to them.
Buy Now on Amazon

Thanks for reading!

(Note - Amazon links and some other links in this article are affiliate links. I will get a small amount of commission if you purchase any book without paying any extra amount)

I have published more blog posts about Chess Books and Chess Improvement. You can read that also.

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