Lessons with a Grandmaster II

Boris Gulko, Dr. Joel Sneed

Reviewer: John Donaldson
Everyman Chess
301 pages

Two recent offerings by Everyman Chess bridge the divide between game collection and instructional manual. Boris Gulko is a Grandmaster that needs no introduction. Champion of both the Soviet Union and his adopted United States, a standard bearer of American Olympiad teams for close to two decades, he was a world class player for over thirty years. During this time Gulko concentrated almost exclusively on playing, but occasional articles in Chess Life and Inside Chess gave a hint that his abilities were not confined to the chessboard.

Gulko’s first two books provide evidence the wait was worth it. Collaborating with Dr. Joel Snead, a professor of psychology at Queens College of the City University of New York, Gulko has used 55 of his best games to provide a vehicle to instruct a wide range of players from the club level on up.

All of the games are well-annotated, but what sets this book apart are the questions and comments that Snead makes which draw Gulko out. This book couldn’t have been written without the active participation of both parties.