Book Review: The Queen Of The Board

The Queen's Gambit by [Walter Tevis]

The Queen’s Gambit is a novel written by the late Walter Tevis and was first released in 1983. There was a wildly popular Netflix limited series recently released.

If one is not familiar with the series or this novel, it involves an orphan who becomes captivated by the game of chess. She also gets captivated by pills and booze as she gets older. There really is not much to say here without a bunch of spoilers. At least, I am not sure what else I can say here plotwise.

I will say that it is worth the read. I enjoyed the Netflix series, and the book was pretty good. Sometimes the actual chess scenes can come across as a little dry, but I am not sure how a writer who chooses chess as a backdrop for the story can solve that. Chess is an interesting game, and I wish I could get better at it, but it is not the most thrilling of activities to put into writing. The rest of the story if quite compelling. Outside of the main character, Beth Harmon, the other people with whom she interacts have their own moments of interest. I liked the variety of competitors she faces as she progresses her way through the national and international tournaments.

The Netflix series is pretty faithful to the source material, although it’s the television series that delves more into Beth’s past a bit more than this novel, which is a rather interesting twist.

I was rather pleased with this reading selection. So I am marching onto the next literary destination and revisiting quadriplegic criminologist Lincoln Rhyme in Jeffrey Deaver’s The Steel Kiss.

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