The Great Book of Chess Olympiads

On the author’s and publisher’s behalf we can begin with pleasure, the first blog thread about the cycle of production and publishing of The Great Book of the Chess Olympiads.

Let’s explain to everyone at the beginning the basic principles underlying the sources of this unique enterprise and in what way they explain to us why, when, how and for whom the Great Book of Olympiad is being created.

What is the Great Book of the Chess Olympiads?

They are series of books, which are unique in the world class attempt of the full reconstruction of Olympic events in chess, from the official Olympiad in 1927 until today. The book is split in the parts which relate to stories of particular Olympiads. There have been 40 Olympiads. Almost 13 years have passed since this work was started and the author made a decision about, beginning and publishing his work. I hope that it will be an interesting book for all people who are interested in chess and who desire to go through the Olympic emotions again.

What will I find in the Great Book of the Olympiads?

Imagine that you are observing Olympic combat,  round after round. You look at competitors, you recognize up-and-coming stars and you identify the old masters. You are near the chessboard when there is something fascinating happening on it. You know exactly why the master Kalabar loses after the fourth move, and what happens when the best chess players lose five games in a row – will they do better?… You can see dramatic situations in the next to last round, when the pursuit for leadership finishes as a success, however … there is one round left and anything can happen.

Can you guess what this book is about? It is just a story which is being told from the perspective of the narrator who is there in the present. He is an enthusiast who quotes games, diagrams, tables, statistics, photos, sketches and everything that can be introduced into the atmosphere surrounding those days.

What else can favor those series?

The first of all, we can’t compare this series to any other work because nobody took on the task of writing down the history of the Olympiads on such an impressive scale.

All available games, which were played during the Olympiads were played back, cleaned from errors and completed. Some of them were improved with the help of competitors.

All tables, charts of players, results of players, were reconstructed. Due to that the series tell us different individual and team statistics, which show the interesting aspects of a tournament. For example the actual power in the game of particular players.
They paid attention to the correct spelling of the names of the competitors.

In every work, there are included generally available photographs, and also unique photographs and information which are unavailable today because their sources disappeared, or were closed down.

More information will be published on the websites of this blog for you to read.

Have nice reading !


The English version is available!

A few weeks ago we announced that we will translate the first Olympiad from Polish into English. We saw to it that the names especially the names of the players, cities, sources of information and openings should be translated correctly.

An e-book, "The First Olympiad – London 1927" is available today. It should be good news for all English – speaking lovers of chess. Currently the book is available on the website of the distributor, but we plan that this book will be available soon at the following bookstores: iBookstore and Barnes & Noble NOOK Book Store.

We wish you nice reading!


The interview with the author

The interview with Krzysztof Puszczewicz - the author of "The Great Book of Chess Olympiads"

Wrocław, 21st June, 2012

Comrel: In June 2012, your first book from the series history of the Chess Olympiads was published, why did you decide to write it?

Krzysztof Puszczewicz: the Chess Olympiads accompanied by the competitive atmosphere and awareness which you have when you observe that in the room ’’ all the world’’ is in one place and focused on the wonderful active game on the 64 squares. It fascinated me and I have been interested in it for many years. I have kept track of not only the wonderful national tournaments but I have also wanted everyone to be able to go through this sports discipline, the beauty of the event, where teams of over one hundred countries compete with each other.

Comrel: Why did you decide to publish your book in the form of e – book not a traditional book?

Krzysztof Puszczewicz: This for is in accordance with modern technology. It is more available and practical than paper books. I think that electronic publishing houses hand down the content of books in more attractive forms than traditional publishing houses.

Comrel: Is it worth it to publish this kind of book in today’s market? I didn’t find any other book about chess available as an e – book.

Krzysztof Puszczewicz: It is not only worth but it is also an obligation! There hasn’t been a full anthology published in any country, which would provide not only many ideas to lovers of  chess, but also would help historians to systematize the facts. The beautiful episodes of competition, the interesting journeys which accompany Olympiads aren’t known to people because they were published only in hard to find available magazines, newspapers and tournament books. It was the only reason…

Comrel: Does the book repeat the information contained on olimpbase.org ?

Krzysztof Puszczewicz: When this popular chess website was created, I helped the author to correct mistakes and I provided the unique games (for example Emmen, 1957) I indicated mistakes in recordings of games, etc. Olimpbase.org is the website where much information has been collected. It is something like ‘’mathematics’’ of Olympiads. That’s why it doesn’t have any soul, in other words, it doesn’t have something that promises a beautiful, intellectual adventure, the joy and the dramas of chess players, complicated bonds between politics and chess, the influence of war for the fate of the Polish representative and other players. I wanted to keep track of the most interesting chess players in history.

That’s why this book was published…

Comrel: Do those sources include mistakes?

Krzysztof Puszczewicz: The most important elements of the Olympiads are recordings of the games. Many of them are quoted in the most important Internet sources and some of them are peculiar and they have no connection in the real chess situations.

This is an example: It is the Olympiad Bled 2002, the game between Bojković and Velinhandi. The white plays 72.Ke4??, and the black instead of checkmating in one move – they surrender! Why! – Ask the contestant. The black surrendered because the white played 72.Kg6!!,  and the mat can’t be saved in five moves.
Many games of chess aren’t complete, for example there is a lack of half of the recording and the others show only the final course of the game (10 – 12 last moves) and they are not truly a complete game. There aren’t slipups like that in our anthology. I am not criticizing Olimpbase.org, this website is engaged in collecting as much materials as possible. They don’t analyze that but our focus is the opposite.
Comrel: London 1927 opens the series of ‘’ The Great Book of the Chess Olympiads’’ – how many chapters should the book include and what be contained in them?

Krzysztof Puszczewicz: It will be the complete anthology, in other words I want to guide a reader through the Olympiads from the memorable Olympiad in London to the last Olympiad which took place in 2012. Then after each Olympiad I will try to provide well thought out addendums to the book of Olympiads.

Comrel: What are you working on now?

Krzysztof Puszczewicz: I am working on the Olympiad which took place in Turin in 2006.

Comrel: What publishing plans do you have?

Krzysztof Puszczewicz:  Next volumes….

Comrel: Thank you for the interview and we wish you all good luck.