Preparing chess openings is always not easy. To prepare for chess openings, you need someone who can help you. Everyone cannot hire a chess coach every time. Although hiring a chess coach is the best way to learn chess opening quickly. In this article, we will see the 11 best chess opening books for beginners.
All of these books are helpful to you if you are a beginner and a serious chess player. Apart from books, you can use applications such as chess.com or chess24 to prepare and save your opening repertoire.
Beginner players make opening mistakes in most of the games. It is very important to study basic openings and opening principles. Opening principles will help you to find strong moves without having proper knowledge.
These books will not only help you study openings but also help you to improve your chess game.
How to Prepare Chess Openings
- Understand your style – Each player has their playing style. You have to assess your style first. Simply you can analyze your games and understand your playing style. If you are a tactical player then you should choose more attacking opening and if you are a defensive player then you should select positional opening.
- Choose 1 or 2 openings – This is also very important. Many chess players play random openings for years and then they don’t get results. You should only focus on one or max 2 openings. You can study more variations in the same opening. If you change the opening then it becomes a very tiring process as you have to prepare a new repertoire and learn the basics from the structure.
- Watch Lots of games – Watching top players’ games is one of the best ways to learn chess. If you are a beginner then you can use lichess or chess.com to watch top players’ games played on your opening. If you use chessbase software, then you can filter games with position and watch 100s of games. This will help you to learn how players continue position in the same opening that you are preparing.
- Prepare a basic repertoire – After watching games and deciding on a good book, you can start preparing a basic repertoire. If you are a beginner then don’t go into deep preparation. You can prepare until the first 10-12 moves. Instead, you can focus more on the middle game.
- Play and analyze games – Once you finish preparing your repertoire, you can start playing the game in tournaments or online. Initially start playing online games before playing in the actual tournament. You can also play with your friends and analyze with them.
- Expand your repertoire – After playing games, you should start analyzing all variations in detail. Whether it’s a blitz game or classical, you must analyze your games. Once your analysis is done, add your analysis to the repertoire. By doing this way, you can expand your repertoire very quickly.
Best chess opening books
Winning chess is a very famous chess book series by the author Yassir Seirawen. Winning chess book explains how to make a plan, how to not lose in openings, and some basic opening principles. This book is one of the best chess books for beginners if they want to improve the basics of chess openings. In Yasser Seirawan’s entertaining, easy-to-follow style, you’re shown formations that can be used with other White or Black pieces. This book will also help you in building a solid understanding of the opening.
Christof becomes very famous when he published this book. In this book, he explained every variation in a simple and easy-to-remember manner. After purchasing this book, you don’t need any other repertoire to prepare e4. This is a complete gem for beginners who want to prepare e4. If you are an experienced player then go for a different repertoire or build your own by referring to this book.
Christof also published 1.d4 to help d4 players. The author suggested the fianchetto set up in this book. Fianchetto setup is one of the safest and best setups to play. Again this book is also made for beginners. Christof selected variations that are very easy to play and learn.
This simple book suggests the 50 best openings which are tried and tested by international masters and grandmasters. These openings are also very easy to play. This book teaches the names and starting moves of all the main chess openings, and explains the basic ideas. Beginners will learn how to position their pieces for maximum impact. More experienced players will discover some remarkable tactical and strategic themes that are vital for chess mastery.
This book is published by gambit publications which is part of the Play Magnus group. In this book, the author collected 101 chess traps which are based on different openings. The author’s main was focus was to choose risk-free openings and traps. This book is also recommended for beginners and intermediate chess players. If you learn more traps then you can go for bill wall 700 chess opening traps book.
One more book of gambit publication. In this book, you will guide to most of the famous chess openings with an analysis of master-level chess players. Also with simple and well explain annotations, you will understand how openings work and how you can play chess openings. Targeted book strength is for advanced level players but beginners also can understand chess.
This book is perfect for players who love to study chess openings. In this book, you will get a perfect guide on how you can build a chess opening repertoire. This book is originally published in 2014, hence you will not find online resources to build repertoire. Recently there are various modern websites are available where you don’t need software or even a coach to build a repertoire.
In this book, Mauricio analyzed 28 different types of opening structures and explained how to continue them. By studying this book, you will understand different types of opening structures, positions, etc. I recommend his book for intermediate and above players. This book will also help you to understand different patterns in chess.
This entire series consists of more than 20 chess books on different chess openings. This series is published by Quality Chess which is right now the best publication house in the world. You can choose opening books according to your openings and start preparing.
If you finish any book from this series, you will get complete knowledge about that openings. Every repertoire is written by world-class grandmasters including Boris Avrukh, Mikhail Marin, Gawain Jones, etc.
If you want to surprise your opponent on move no 2 then this book is perfect for you. In this book, the author suggested playing 1. E4 e5 2. Nf3 d5!. Although this opening is recommended to play regularly. But for sure, you can play and try on your opponent. Also, this opening preparation can be useful in rapid as well as blitz games to fool your opponent. Although, keep in mind that if white played all moves perfectly then black will end up with a minus position. Black also has some chances in some variations.
If you don’t know what to prepare against 1.d4 then start preparing the king’s Indian Defense. Initially, you will lose a lot of games but you will love to play king’s Indian Defense. GM Victor Bologan wrote this amazing book on King’s Indian with a detailed opening analysis. This opening book is a masterpiece if you want to prepare king’s Indian variation in deep. I would recommend you to read the following articles and watch Hikaru’s video on King’s Indian Defense.
Read more blogs on King’s Indian Defense:-
Resources to prepare openings
- Modern Chess – Modern chess is a website where you will find opening repertoires by grandmasters and titled players. You can use coupon code NIKHIL to get 40% off on modern chess.
- Chess.com Membership – Chess.com membership is a one-stop solution to prepare all chess openings. They have video collections, lessons, and many other features where you can prepare your repertoire and save your mistakes. You can also try all features with this 7-day free diamond membership trial.
- Chess24 – Chess24 also offers a wide range of videos and some features to build your opening repertoire. To access all these features, you need to purchase a premium membership.
There are multiple free resources available where you will find various opening videos and other material. Some of the best youtube channels are as follows
- Hanging Pawns
- Gotham Chess
- Chessbase India
- Nikhil Dixit
What is the best chess book on openings?
There are multiple chess books available that teach you particular chess openings. Grandmaster repertoire is by far the most successful series ever written. There is also a starting out chess series for beginners.
What is the most famous opening in chess?
Multiple chess openings are famous. The most famous chess opening is Ruy Lopez. Ruy Lopez was a chess player who founded this opening in early 1600. Also, Sicilian Defense, Berlin Variation, French Defense, KID, Caro Kann defense, Queen’s gambit, etc are some of the openings which are quite popular.
How can I learn chess openings?
There are multiple ways to learn chess openings. The best way is to watch video courses. There are multiple websites such as chess.com, ichess.net, chess24, and the chess world, chessable that provide video courses on openings. Another option is to purchase a book and study it in detail. The most convenient option is to hire a chess coach.
What is the Queen’s Gambit opening?
In Queen’s Gambit white starts with 1.d4. Black replies with d5 and then white plays the c4 move. Black can take c4 pawn for free and that’s why it is known as the queen’s gambit. This is one of the most played openings in chess.
What are the 4 opening principles of chess?
There are various chess principles. But the 4 most important principles are as follows
- Develop your pieces first.
- King Safety is important
- Clear the back rank and connect your rooks.
- Develop towards the center.
How long does it take to learn a chess opening?
It depends upon which opening you want to prepare and how deep you want to prepare. Approximately it will take 30-45 days to learn and get basic knowledge and then 60-90 days to get deeper into it. If you choose a very simple opening then it can be prepared in 5-7 days also. The most difficult openings to prepare are Ruy Lopez, Sicilian Defense, King’s Pawn Opening, King’s Indian Defense, etc.