Best Chess Puzzles Books: Top Picks for Mastering Tactics in 2023

Chess puzzles are a fantastic way to improve one’s chess skills and develop a deeper understanding of the game. These puzzles often present players with different challenges and scenarios to overcome, testing a variety of skills, such as tactics, strategy, and pattern recognition. Chess puzzle books, in particular, offer a convenient and accessible way for players to practice and hone their skills by solving curated problems, both in their leisure time and during dedicated study hours.

Selecting the best chess puzzles book depends on the player’s skill level, learning goals, and personal preferences. Beginners might benefit from books that cover basic tactics and principles, while more advanced players may seek out volumes that delve into complex strategies and grandmaster-level positions. Some chess enthusiasts may prefer books that categorize puzzles by themes, such as endgames or openings, while others might appreciate collections that offer a broader variety of challenges.

When choosing the ideal chess puzzles book, it’s crucial to consider factors like the clarity of the explanations, the organization of the content, the level of difficulty progression, and the overall quality of the puzzles. Additionally, the book’s author plays a role as well; a reputable chess master or coach can provide valuable insights and guidance that may be lacking in books by less-experienced authors. Many chess books are available in both print and digital formats, so personal preferences regarding media can also influence one’s decision.

Chess puzzles provide countless hours of mental stimulation while helping players to improve their critical thinking skills, pattern recognition, and overall gameplay. By selecting the right chess puzzles book that aligns with your skill level, interests, and preferred teaching style, you’ll be well on your way to mastering the game and deepening your appreciation for its rich complexities. In this article, we will discuss the top chess puzzles books on the market, taking into account the aforementioned factors, to help you find the perfect fit for your chess journey.

Best Chess Puzzle Books

In this comprehensive roundup, we present to you the top chess puzzle books available on Amazon to sharpen your skills and elevate your game.

The Best Move: Morphy (Chess Legends Book 2)

The Best Move: Morphy

A must-have addition to your chess collection if you’re seeking to learn from the genius of Paul Morphy.


  • Comprehensive coverage of tactical and positional plays
  • Easy-to-understand diagrams with light notes
  • Showcases the creative and energetic playstyle of Paul Morphy


  • Limited to Morphy’s games, not a general chess puzzle compilation
  • No X-Ray feature
  • Word Wise not enabled

I recently had the pleasure of delving into “The Best Move: Morphy (Chess Legends Book 2).” As a chess enthusiast, I appreciated the detailed and thoughtful analysis of Paul Morphy’s games. The numerous diagrams provided throughout the book allowed me to easily visualize each scenario and understand the tactics employed.

The author, Lyudmil Tsvetkov, did a wonderful job of covering both tactical and positional scenarios in Morphy’s games. As I went through the pages, I found myself enthralled by the unique energy and creativity displayed in Morphy’s plays. This book not only honed my chess skills but also provided me with a deeper appreciation for the game itself.

While “The Best Move: Morphy” offers immense educational value, it’s important to note that it specifically focuses on the games of Paul Morphy. For those seeking a broader range of chess puzzles, this book might not be the perfect fit. Additionally, the absence of Word Wise and X-Ray features might disappoint some readers. However, despite these minor shortcomings, this book remains a valuable resource for those who wish to learn from one of the greatest chess legends.

The Best Move: Fischer (Chess Legends Book 1)

The Best Move: Fischer (Chess Legends Book 1)

A worthwhile addition to any chess player’s library, offering a unique look at Fischer’s games with engaging puzzles and valuable insights.


  • High-quality diagrams and graphics
  • Focus on tactical and positional strategic moves
  • Informative yet concise explanations


  • Contains occasional typos and incorrect solutions
  • Answers to test questions are close to puzzles
  • Inconsistent notation style

I recently picked up a copy of “The Best Move: Fischer (Chess Legends Book 1)” and found myself quite engaged with the variety of puzzles and the insights it provided on Fischer’s games. As a chess enthusiast, it’s refreshing to see a book that not only focuses on tactics but also includes positional strategic moves.

The book is visually appealing, with large diagrams and high-quality graphics to help the reader better understand the game. The explanations provided are short and to the point, which makes it easy to digest the information without getting lost in lengthy text. This is especially helpful when trying to improve one’s chess skills without feeling overwhelmed by complex explanations.

However, the book is not without flaws. Some readers might be put off by the occasional typos and incorrect solutions found within the puzzles. Additionally, the answers to test questions are provided immediately, making it difficult to avoid spoilers. Lastly, the inconsistent notation style can be a bit confusing at times.

In conclusion, “The Best Move: Fischer (Chess Legends Book 1)” is a valuable resource for chess players, providing a unique look at Bobby Fischer’s games and offering tactics and strategic insights. While it does have a few minor drawbacks, the quality of content and engaging presentation make it well worth the purchase.

500 Chess Puzzles, Mate in 2

500 Chess Puzzles

The 500 Chess Puzzles, Mate in 2 book is an excellent training tool for those looking to improve their chess tactics on beginner and intermediate levels.


  • Diverse range of puzzles
  • Beginner and intermediate level focus
  • Lightweight and easy to carry


  • Limited instructions
  • May not be suitable for advanced players
  • Could benefit from more in-depth explanations

As I began working through the 500 Chess Puzzles, Mate in 2 book, I was delighted by the variety of puzzles it offered. Each problem was crafted to challenge my tactical skills and truly engaged me in the learning process. I found it particularly useful for beginners like myself, as well as those looking to hone their abilities in the intermediate level.

However, while diving into the puzzles, I realized that the book doesn’t provide many instructions or explanations. It would be beneficial to include guidance on how to approach the puzzles, especially for those new to chess tactics.

Another aspect I noticed was that the book may not be entirely suited for advanced players. It focuses primarily on beginner and intermediate levels, so those looking for highly complex puzzles might want to look elsewhere.

Despite some shortcomings, the 500 Chess Puzzles, Mate in 2 book has helped me improve my chess gameplay significantly. Its lightweight design and portable size allow for easy transport, making it the perfect companion for any chess enthusiast on-the-go. Overall, I would recommend this book to anyone looking to sharpen their tactical chess skills at the beginner and intermediate levels.

Bobby Fischer Teaches Chess

Bobby Fischer Teaches Chess

A classic chess book for beginners and intermediate players aiming to improve their tactics and endgame knowledge.


  • Comprehensive endgame tactics
  • Engaging puzzle format
  • Suitable for various skill levels


  • Limited early-game strategies
  • May feel repetitive for advanced players
  • Dated layout and design

Bobby Fischer Teaches Chess is a gem for everyone who loves to play chess and wants to level up their endgame skills. The book presents various puzzles, making it not only informative but also fun to read. It is evident that the author, Bobby Fischer, had an incredible understanding of the game, and his teachings are helpful for players of different skill levels. He breaks down complex concepts into simple, easy-to-follow steps, allowing readers to grasp essential tactics and improving their gameplay.

However, the book’s focus leans heavily on endgame tactics; thus, those looking for comprehensive early-game strategies might not find it as helpful. The presentation might feel outdated, especially for younger readers accustomed to modernized formats. Furthermore, advanced players might find some sections repetitive or too basic for their skill level.

Overall, Bobby Fischer Teaches Chess is an excellent resource for chess enthusiasts who want to enhance their endgame tactics and enjoy solving puzzles. Its engaging content, coupled with the expertise of the legendary Bobby Fischer, makes it a valuable addition to any chess player’s book collection.

Chess: 5334 Problems, Combinations and Games

Chess: 5334 Problems, Combinations and Games

An excellent choice for chess enthusiasts seeking to improve their skills with an extensive collection of problems and puzzles.


  • Wide range of puzzles for various skill levels
  • Comprehensive content with over 5000 problems
  • Suitable for beginners to intermediate players


  • Possibly overwhelming for complete beginners
  • Not ideal as a standalone teaching aid
  • Limited use for advanced players

As a chess enthusiast, I found the book “Chess: 5334 Problems, Combinations and Games” to be incredibly engaging and helpful for practice and improvement. With a vast collection of problems, puzzles, and combinations, it offers hours of enjoyable brain exercise for players venturing into the world of chess. The book is suitable for beginners to intermediate players, covering various difficulty levels that accommodate a wide range of skills.

One of the major benefits of this book is its comprehensive content. With over 5000 problems to solve, it provides the reader with continuous challenges and ensures that you will always have something new to learn. The different sections are well-organized, and the instructions are clear, making it easy for the reader to follow.

However, despite its impressive content, “Chess: 5334 Problems, Combinations and Games” might be overwhelming for complete beginners. It is important to note that this book is not meant to be a standalone teaching aid; pairing it with other instructional resources might be more helpful and engaging for brand-new players. Additionally, advanced players might find the usefulness of some problems in the book to be limited, as it is primarily geared towards beginners and intermediate players.

In conclusion, “Chess: 5334 Problems, Combinations and Games” is a valuable and engaging resource for those looking to improve their chess skills and techniques. Although it may not be ideal for complete beginners as a standalone teaching aid, it serves as an excellent supplementary tool and a powerful collection of exercises for players of various skill levels. As someone who has experienced firsthand the benefits of the book, I highly recommend it to anyone passionate about chess and eager to enhance their gameplay.

Buying Guide

When looking for the best chess puzzles book, there are several factors to consider that will ultimately lead you to the perfect choice for your skill level and goals.

Skill Level

First and foremost, consider your skill level or the skill level of the person you are purchasing the book for. Chess puzzle books typically cater to beginners, intermediate, or advanced players. Choosing the appropriate level ensures that the puzzles are challenging without being overwhelming and discouraging.

Number of Puzzles

The number of puzzles included in a book is another important factor. More puzzles generally equal a more comprehensive book that will keep you engaged for a longer period. Look for books with a variety of puzzle types and difficulty levels to maintain interest and facilitate improvement.

Clearly Explained Solutions

A valuable chess puzzle book should provide clear, detailed solutions for each puzzle. Solutions should be easy to understand and should include explanations for why a particular move was made. This not only helps you understand the reasoning behind the solution, but it also encourages learning and improvement.

Theme-Based Puzzles

Some puzzle books focus on specific themes, such as endgames, tactics, or strategy. If you are looking to improve a particular aspect of your game, consider investing in a theme-based puzzle book. This can provide targeted practice to help you elevate your play in specific areas.

Quality of Content

Lastly, pay attention to the quality of the content itself. Look for reviews and recommendations from other chess players on the quality of the puzzles and the explanations. Well-structured and engaging content makes for a more enjoyable learning and practice experience.

By considering these factors – skill level, number of puzzles, clearly explained solutions, theme-based puzzles, and quality of content – you can ensure that you choose the best chess puzzle book for your needs and growth as a chess player.


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