Every Endgame Book You Need to Master Chess

100 Endgames you must know:
Endgame Strategy:
Mastering Endgame Strategy:
Dvoretsky’s Endgame Manual:
Silman’s Complete Endgame Course:

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50 Comments

  1. Hey guys, thoughts on Understanding Chess Endgames by John Nunn? What rating level is it meant for?

  2. Didn't know that Shereshevsky and Hellsten are 1200+ thought they are more like 2000+

  3. I just purchased Fundamental Chess Endings by Karsten Muller and Frank Lamprecht a few days ago. Is this a good fit for someone about 1450 strength??

  4. It's interesting that you mention Silman's
    book.Silman said about Soltis's book
    "Grandmaster Secrets:The Endgame"
    "The best endgame book for a class player
    that's ever been written"

  5. Thanks for recommendations. Two more books I can add are Muller’s how to play chess endgame and van perlo endgame tactics good exercise book. Heard good comments from GM videos

  6. I have all of these books and I have to agree with Kostya's advice on what order to use them in. Dvoretsky is no joke 🥵

  7. Kostya, have you read Van Perlo and if so, do you recommend it and for what rating level?

  8. Learn how to play chess as a beginner says:

    I am fortunate to have most of the mentioned books covered. I really enjoy your style of presenting and content. I recently subscribed to Chess Dojo after watching one of your videos. It’s nice to know I’m on the right track as I self study through the pandemic.

  9. Great, very helpful video. First time I've heard the advice: #1 Silman through your class +1 higher and then #2 endgame strategy. But it makes total sense.

  10. Shereshevsky’s endgame strategy is amazing, but also I think it is a very complicated book, maybe 1200s going to shereshevsky should get a warning that it is wicked hard stuff and you have to put a lot of time into it to truly understand the positions given.

  11. Hm I always thought 100 endgames you most know also has chapters with easier endgames. The writer talks about what endings you need to study in the introduction:

    "A second step in this first stage would involve the Philidor and Lucena Positions in Rook + Pawn vs. Rook endings, as well as some more ideas in pawn endings and opposite-coloured Bishop endings. In this book, this would amount to Chapter 2, Chapter 4, Chapter 5 and Endings 41, 42, 44, 45, 46, 65, 79, 80, 82, 86, 89, 90, 91 and 92 (…) that is enough until the moment one reaches, say, a FIDE rating of around 1900-2000."

    Then I had email contact with him and he said "The chapters 3 and 4 (Knights vs. Pawns, and Queen vs pawns) are also quite basic and must be in the list of most elementary endings. At this moment I can not think of a reason to have left them out."

  12. please do this for strategy/middle game and openings

  13. Another book that has helped me alot (1800 rated btw) is Paul Keres Practical Chess Endings – it much like silman covers common endgames you are most likely to encounter – great diagrams and content. The suggestions you have though are also great.

  14. Me on day one of vacation wishing I had brought my copy of Shereshevsky’s endgame book 🙁

  15. You can't go wrong studying game collections by world champions either.

  16. I like the selection of books and the order to go through them in. I am currently working on 100 Endgames You Must Know. Perhaps 2000+ would be the rating level where one needs to know the endgames within. However, as a sub-2000 rated player, I feel like the book is comprehensible for players down to a 1600 rating if not lower.

  17. I am quite surprised that you recommend Hellsten books for that low rated players, all I ever heard is they are for 2100 and above

  18. This list is amazing! Would love a similar list dedicated to improving at positional chess

  19. Hi Kostya, here is another that Andras Toth recommended on his channel 'How to Play Chess Endgames' by Karsten Muller. He recommends to use after Shereshevsky's 'Endgame Strategy' which itself he recommends for 1800+ iirc

  20. Very helpful Video – i hope that you will cover tactics, Strategie etc. as well.

  21. I just saw that I have a German edition of Schereschewski’s book. Some people like Magnus said that it is a very good book. I gave a try with it some years ago. I will give a try again, who knows, perhaps I will be able to go through the whole thing. What I remember from this book is “don’t rush”, “centralise your king” and “think on setups, not on single moves / lines”.

  22. Great vid – do you a have similar one for middlegamea and other areas?

  23. Please do a similar video for the middlegame!

  24. As an intermediate player (1500) working through De La Villa's book, to me it doesn't feel like 2000+ material at all. The positions on their own aren't too bad, but the main difficulty I suppose is that 100 is a LOT of positions to remember. I've been taking notes of the main concepts while working through some of the subvariations on an analysis board. That certainly helps my memory a lot.

  25. FYI fourth edition of 100 EYMK adds a new first chapter covering the basics (rule of the square) etc.

  26. What do you think of "Just the Facts" by Lev Alburt Nikolay Krogius and "Winning Chess Endings" by Yasser Seirawan?

  27. Kostya is amazingly honest. No false publicity of books.

  28. Great channel! SO as a 1000 rated player Silman is all i need?

  29. Superb explanation. I finished the book 100 endgames you must know, but still feel not very confident. So i am currently 3/4 of the Practical Chess Endings by Keres. Hopefully after this, i have the energy to re-read the 100 endgames you must know. Thank you.

  30. Karsten Muller's and Wolfgang Pajeken's 2008 published by Gambit easily eclipses Shereshevsky’s work, both in quality and quantity.

  31. Your advice is right on here. I've been going through Silman and it's helping me so much. Skipped the first chapter. He is so clear and thorough.

  32. I got dvortsky as my first endgame book, big mistake! I was told I needed to read 100 endgames u should know first. Now I've just ordered silmans from amazon so I've ordered them in reverse but gonna read them in order! 🤣

  33. Endgame books were the ones which contributed the most to my rating jump from 950 to around 1700 online in like 1.5 years. I think endgame study is the single most underrated aspect of chess. All I did was just study endgames and tactics and play games. I didn't do anything else and my play became significantly better. What everyone misses is that the point of studying endgames is not just to memorise how to win certain endgames but to acquire essential skills which are useful right from the opening. Endgames force you to think and think hard and that's what essentially improves your chess. This is exactly why I don't understand why people highly rate the Silman endgame book which only teaches you how to win from the theoretical endgames but doesn't help you acquire skills which are essential. Also the idea that a person should not study advanced endgames until their rating goes higher is not true according to me. I started reading the Dvoretsky's endgame manual and it was extremely overwhelming at first. But I think that's exactly the point. The point is to make you think hard. Especially beginners should be introduced to chess by teaching basic checkmates and stuff. I see some people teach beginners by telling them to play the London system and other openings which I don't think is any benificial because they will be playing moves without understanding what they are doing. I don't understand any opening 100% and neither does any intermediate player so why should beginners memorise opening moves? Endgame is mostly sidelinesd these days especially in favour of openings. Even Capablanca said that anyone studying chess should first start with the endgame. I think it's absolutely true because endgame not only helps you in the endgame but every phase of the game. I never memorised any opening. I learnt some openings by reading annotated games of grandmasters and trying to understand them.

  34. Hey Kostya, thank you for sharing this amazing list. I totally agree with you on the fact that 100-end games you must know is a bit advanced for beginner players. I bought that course on Chessable, and though I have completed 80% of the course, I still struggle with theoretical Rook end games when reviewing the moves. My pawn and Bishop end games have considerably improved after working on most of that course. I plan to revisit and review moves very often in the coming years. My score on the final test of that course is still ~25%(so, yeah! a lot to learn and review).

    I plan to buy Mastering Chess End games by GM Hellsten because I want to solve more positions from practical master-level games. Recently, I bought Hellsten's other book, Mastering Chess Strategy (also bought on Chessable), and I am absolutely in love with that book.

    One of the best things about learning these end games is that it gives me so much confidence to simplify the position during superior positions or try to hold worse middle games (by simplifying to an equal or slightly worse end game).

  35. I just ordered my first two chess books and one of them was Silman's Complete Endgame Course thanks to this video, so thanks again for the recommendation!

  36. Whats the differnce of the 4th and 5th edition of the dvoretsky book? Thanks fir the ansewr.

  37. My humble advice re Dvoretsky's Endgame Manual (I'm <=2000) is to read respective sections when you analyse your games. That is, if you just lost an ending with opposite-color bishops, go read that chapter and see how you could've saved it even 2 pawns down. This type of contextual learning is much better than trying to remember rather abstract stuff.
    Another book I suggest is *Amateur to IM*, it's endgame principles, a much lighter reading.

  38. I bought the book a while back and it is very thorough. I'm thinking about creating a series of videos explaining the ideas in the book. But if you can I definitely recommend getting the book

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