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Friday, March 16, 2012

Chess in Fiction - A Partial History of Lost Causes

Chess blog for latest chess news and chess trivia (c) Alexandra Kosteniuk, 2012

Hi everyone,

We found this interesting review of a new chess novel - A Partial History of Lost Causes by Jennifer DuBois. It is about the journey of two characters - a world chess champion living in St. Petersburg, Russia, and an English lecturer in Cambridge, Mass., who discovers a connection between her late father and the Russian prodigy-turned-politician. In this excerpt, Aleksandr Bezetov is newly-arrived in Leningrad in 1979, and meeting with a pair of dissidents—Nikolai and Ivan—who will help shape his future. 

Don't miss the chess dialogue.

“Alcohol isn’t good for my game,” said Aleksandr. He was starting to be sorry he’d come. “It makes me fuzzy. It dulls my memory. Chess is all memory. Memory and imagination.”

“Memory and imagination are both technically illegal,” said Ivan. “Do you want us to order you a beer, then?”


“Because, to tell you the truth, you don’t seem like the sharpest individual,” said Ivan.

“No,” said Nikolai. “He doesn’t.”

“I know you’re a brilliant chess mind,” said Ivan. “This is what the newspapers tell me. And I believe what the newspapers tell me, always.”

“Always,” said Nikolai.

“But you can be good at one thing and not so good at other things,” said Ivan.

“Or you can be good at one thing and not so good at any other thing,” said Nikolai.

Read more here.

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