Tuesday, September 4, 2007

Mate? Check

WOODSTOCK, N.Y. (Wireless Flash - FlashNews) – Chess may be a relaxing, gentleman’s game, but it can also drive you mad.

Paul Hoffman is the author of King’s Gambit (Hyperion), in which he profiles the prolific, proud, often paranoid players in the highest ranks of the chess world, including prodigy Bobby Fischer, whose life after the “royal game” was dominated by dark, dangerous delusions.

Hoffman, who was a talented tournament player but gave up competitive chess after high school, says, “It was too absorbing. I dreamt about it constantly – I’d dream about men moving like bishops. It’s the nature of the game to get sucked in.”

He adds, “Chess is very seductive – you see yourself getting better but never mastering it. It’s a bloodsport.”

And while his board book details the game’s deceptive, devious side, it was Hoffman’s love of the ladies that kept him in check.

Hoffman says, “One of the reason I gave up chess is that I discovered girls.”

King’s Gambit makes its move into stores September 11.

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