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Manny Rayner's book reviews

I love reviewing books - have been doing it at Goodreads, but considering moving here.

Currently reading

The Greatest Show On Earth: The Evidence For Evolution
Richard Dawkins
R in Action
Robert Kabacoff
Fluid Concepts and Creative Analogies
Douglas R. Hofstadter
McGee on Food and Cooking: An Encyclopedia of Kitchen Science, History and Culture
Harold McGee
Epistemic Dimensions of Personhood
Simon Evnine
Pattern Recognition and Machine Learning (Information Science and Statistics)
Christopher M. Bishop
Relativity, Thermodynamics and Cosmology
Richard C. Tolman
The Cambridge Handbook of Second Language Acquisition
Julia Herschensohn, Martha Young-Scholten

Karpov's Caro Kann: Panov's Attack

Karpov's Caro Kann: Panov's Attack - Anatoly Karpov, Mikhail Podgaets, Jimmy Adams If Chess Were Love: An Analogy

Instead of telling you just what it is that Karpov and Podgaets are saying about the Panov attack, which I fear is of limited interest, let me try and explain it in emotional terms. I used to play chess competitively at international level, and opening theory was very important. I'd spend a lot of time reading up on what the top players were doing, researching new moves, discussing them with my friends, and so on. The Panov Attack was an opening I played regularly. Now, I can buy this book, and get hard answers to many questions which I cared deeply about in the 70s. It's fascinating. The only problem is, there's just too much information.

Analogy time! Let's pretend that I had a similar experience in everyday life. I'm asleep one night and I'm granted a direct audience with one of God's angels. Here's me talking to Gabriel:

- Okay Manny, now I know you've wondered many times what would have happened if you'd kissed Sara at that party?

- Uh, yeah.

The rest of this review is in my book What Pooh Might Have Said to Dante and Other Futile Speculations