From the author's Introduction of the first edition: Chess is by far the most popular board game in the world. There are millions of players of all ages and the number keeps growing. Maybe it's because you become a general who directs an army against your opponent in an exciting battle of wits. Whatever the reason, chess is challenging and fascinating. This is my attempt to lure you to the royal game. It's based on the very same lessons I have given to thousands of beginners. Their questions and problems have shaped it. Moreover, some of the best ideas in the book were actually suggested by new players! I have tried to be as direct as possible. To make your journey a smooth one, the fundamentals have been broken down into short, logical statements. Each idea is numbered, ordered, and clearly stated. For the most part, statements are linked in graded sequence with the easier ones preceding the harder. The format is unique and easy to follow. You should feel yourself learning step by step. You will see how chess players think about their moves. Where desirable, explanation has replaced calculation. The stress is on understanding, t memory. There are plenty of diagrams for almost every idea. Except for one practice section, you can even read this book without a chess set!