So, you want to improve your rook endings? Good choice, as they occur more often in your games than your favourite opening lines!

Allow vastly experienced trainer Valentin Bogdanov to assist. However, we are not headed for the classroom, but to the tournament hall! We shall witness tense moments as the greatest champions in chess history battle their way through all manner of rook endings: tactical, strategic and technical. Your coach will be whispering in your ear, explaining what is happening and giving the theoretical background. You will also be getting the benefit of modern computer analysis, which X-rays these classic games for errors and missed resources in a way that was not possible even a few years ago. A feast of astonishing analysis awaits!

We shall see that even the best players make a surprising number of errors in rook endings. This should give us heart to fight even in the most desperate of situations, and motivate us to study these endgames so we can pick up the many half-points and points that our opponents will surely offer up to us. By emphasizing the most common themes and areas where players go astray, Bogdanov helps us determine which parts of those technical endgame manuals that are sitting on our shelves are most worth thumbing through. This book can also simply be enjoyed as a stroll through chess history – you will be amazed how many key turning-points occurred in rook endgames!

The players featured in this book include all 17 official world champions, the 3 ‘uncrowned kings’ who preceded them, and a selection of 8 other outstanding players. There are 384 examples in total. The book is completed with a selection of 68 exercise positions, and detailed indexes of themes and players.

International Master Valentin Bogdanov has vast experience as a chess trainer, and is from Ukraine. His pupils include Moskalenko, Savchenko and Drozdovsky, and he has acted as a second for the well-known grandmaster and theoretician Viacheslav Eingorn since the late 1970s. For 50 years he has been a teacher at the chess school in Odesa (Ukraine), and in 2016 won the European Over-65 Championship. In the same year he also qualified as an International Arbiter and has since then officiated over a great many chess events in his country. This is his fifth book for Gambit.

Download a pdf file with a sample from the book.

“A first rate work” – IM John Donaldson

“Not a textbook in the traditional sense of the word… author Valentin Bogdanov takes a completely different tack. As stated in the introduction, ‘we don’t go to the classroom but to the tournament hall.’
Excellent learning material and highly recommended” – Michel Hoetmer,

“A fascinating journey into the world of rook endgames, played by the greatest players of all time.” – John Elburg,

“A wonderful opportunity to learn endings with examples from the best chess players in history.” – Luis Fernández Siles @capakhine