When trying to learn the endgame, we are inevitably pointed towards endgame books like Silman’s Endgame Course or Dvoretsky’s Endgame Manual. I was pointed towards Reuben Fine’s Basic Chess Endings, which has universal positive comments. I tried studying it one summer many years ago … and I found 70 pages of King and Pawn endgames to start, all like the following:
I’ll be honest, I never finished the book. I don’t think I got through the pawn section, and I don’t know the answer to the above position. (I’m hopeful I can figure it out ingame.) In the end, despite studying for a solid month, I felt no stronger at the endgame, and none of those positions ever came up in my games.
THESE are the positions I struggle with. After trying to several different endgames at several different times, none have helped address this problem, and I think I know why. Continue reading