Chess Story by Stefan Zweig
(New York Review Books Classics)

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Synopsis

Chess Story, also known as The Royal Game, is the Austrian master Stefan Zweig’s final achievement, completed in Brazilian exile and sent off to his American publisher only days before his suicide in 1942. It is the only story in which Zweig looks at Nazism, and he does so with characteristic emphasis on the psychological.
Travelers by ship from New York to Buenos Aires find that on board with them is the world champion of chess, an arrogant and unfriendly man. They come together to try their skills against him and are soundly defeated. Then a mysterious passenger steps forward to advise them and their fortunes change. How he came to possess his extraordinary grasp of the game of chess and at what cost lie at the heart of Zweig’s story.

This new translation of Chess Story brings out the work’s unusual mixture of high suspense and poignant reflection.
 

About Stefan Zweig

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STEPHAN ZWEIG (1881-1942) spent his youth studying philosophy and the history of literature in Vienna and belonged to a pan-European cultural circle that included Hugo von Hofmannsthal and Richard Strauss. 1n 1934, under National Socialism, Zweig fled Austria for England, where he authored several novels, short stories, and biographies. In 1941 Zweig and his second wife traveled to Brazil, where they both committed suicide. New York Review Books recently republished his novel, Chess Story, in Fall 2005.JOAN ACOCELLA is a staff writer for The New Yorker and contributes regularly to the New York Review of Books. Her latest books is Willa Cather and the Politics of Criticism.
 
Published December 7, 2011 by NYRB Classics. 104 pages
Genres: Sports & Outdoors, Literature & Fiction. Fiction
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Unrated Critic Reviews for Chess Story

The New York Review of Books

Chess Story, also known as The Royal Game, is the Austrian master Stefan Zweig’s final achievement, completed in Brazilian exile and sent off to his American publisher only days before his suicide in 1942.

Dec 09 2005 | Read Full Review of Chess Story (New York Review ...

Arts Fuse

Similarly, one isn’t really required to play chess in order to relish the twin peaks of twentieth-century chess fiction, Vladimir Nabokov’s The Defense, and Stefan Zweig’s Chess Story.

Dec 30 2007 | Read Full Review of Chess Story (New York Review ...

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Alp Koksoy

Alp Koksoy 5 Sep 2013

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