Winning Quickly with 1.b3 and 1...b6
“I left chess in 2012. I did not touch it for several years. Then I decided to test my strength in Internet blitz. I started from scratch. The board floated before my eyes, and my knee twitched. Less than two months later, I crossed the grandmaster rating mark. My opponents, among them lots of players with a big name, played chess better than me. Surprisingly though, I knew more. On a small island of chess theory, onto which I lured them, I was better equipped. Much better! About 30% of the games ended in wins around the 20th move. A quarter of the games simply ended in mate. In all games, I opened with the moves 1.b3 and 1…b6.”
International Master Ilya Odessky is the world’s leading expert on the 1.b3 and 1…b6 chess opening systems. Despite their apparent calm, these openings can get extremely sharp. Now Odessky presents his findings and achievements of recent years. His baffling traps will help you crush your opponents in the opening, with both White and Black.
Odessky admits that some of his lines may objectively be somewhat dubious. But in blitz and rapid games they will lead to spectacular play and many surprising wins. Ilya Odessky will entertain, amuse and surprise you in this highly unusual chess opening book full of ultra-romantic chess.
Ilya Odessky is an International Master from Russia, a well-known chess coach and a prolific author.
Praise for Ilya Odessky’s Play 1.b3: The Nimzo-Larsen Attack, a Friend for Life (2008):
"Odessky is not just a creative writer but also an excellent chess instructor who combines crystal-clear prose with elegant objectivity." -- Arne Moll, ChessVibes
"As entertaining and original an opening book as we have seen in years." -- British Chess Magazine
"A book that is worth more than just the variations outlined in it." -- Bill McGeary, ChessVille
Editorial review of Winning Quickly with 1.b3 and 1…b6:
“Full of wit, pithy comments, barbed leading questions, some political incorrectness and many dramatic turns of phrase. In these pages, success relies on the fact that ‘to err is human’, as in a stressful situation (i.e. limited time, lack of opening knowledge) strong players have a tendency to go astray. If you have recently become an adept of online Blitz, then this book could be a godsend. The mischievous almost anti-establishment joy in all this trickery is contagious. What tremendous fun! So it’s far from being a rigorous textbook on 1.b3 and 1...b6, more a personal journey showing the appeal as well as the trials and tribulations of going your own way.”
GM Glenn Flear, Yearbook 136
“Filled with amazing analysis and great stories, many of which date back to the author’s formative years in the Soviet Union. These ruminations, which sometimes carry on for several pages, make for fascinating reading and touch upon all manner of chess related themes. Odessky, who more or less retired from tournament play after earning the IM title in 1996, but came back to battle the big boys in rapid and blitz on his home grown turf with 1.b3/ 1…b6, has written a thoroughly entertaining book.”
IM John Donaldson
“Experienced author and 1.b3 expert Odessky reveals in his latest work for New In Chess, [that] both 1.b3 and 1…b6 can easily lead to some rather romantic chess, in which tactics and early attacking chances abound. The author freely admits that not all his recommendations are one hundred percent sound, but they should still pack a definite punch at faster time limits and even at a slower rate at club level.”
CHESS Magazine (UK)
“This book is infectious, extremely rich in analysis, offers a mini-course on linking computer variations and human judgements, and throws out insights on life – very little is missing. Odessky gives us plenty of scope to reflect on the ‘mental architecture’ of the game. Thus he drwas a distinction between ‘traps’ and ‘trap strategy’. In his terrific translation, Steve Giddins conveys the sheer joy and fun that comes from all the hard work. This work deserves a place in every player’s library.”
Peter O’Brien, British Chess Magazine