The Black Lion - The Chess Predator’s Choice Against Both 1.e4 and 1.d4 - by Leo Jansen, Jerry van Rekom
Publisher: New In Chess, 2008
Edition: Paperback medium
Selected as "One of the Best Chess Books of 2009" by CHESS Magazine (UK)
The opening system that was used by a German amateur to defeat World Champion Vishy Anand.
More than 85% of all chess games start with either 1.e4 or 1.d4. The Black Lion presents a flexible, logical and sensible way for Black to meet both of these moves.
This robust, multipurpose opening system (in which Black plays d6, Nf6, Nbd7 and e5) looks quiet, like a sleeping lion - hence the name. But when this predator is provoked, and the game heats up, Black eats its prey in an extremely swift and efficient way.
The opening moves are easy to learn, Black has a good choice of middlegame plans, the positions are fresh and interesting, and White will often struggle to counter Black's ideas.
The story of The Black Lion is remarkable: Jerry van Rekom and Leo Jansen are two strong Dutch club players who developed the system and wrote a book about it in 1997.
Their work attracted a lot of attention and had to be reprinted many times. This is a fully revised and updated edition.
Extensive explanations, clear summaries and concise conclusions make The Black Lion an accessible and easy-to-navigate opening manual for chess amateurs. The book is unique in that its many diagrams are all seen from Black's point of view!
Elburg Chess Reviews:
"One of the most exciting opening books of this moment!"
British Chess Magazine:
"This flexible system will appeal to club and correspondence players who are looking for an all-purpose answer to both 1.e4 and 1.d4"
IM John Donaldson, jeremysilman.com:
"The Black Lion is aimed at aggressive players from 1600 to 2200 who like to go their own way and don't want to have to learn tons of theory."
"This opening can create a surprise effect. Clearly, White needs a lot of time to find the right way to fight the system"
Joe Petrolito, Australasian Chess:
"The authors have produced a very detailed guide to this opening system, and they provide a lot of good advice on ideas and variations."
"In this day and age, when every opening book promises an easy-to-play universal repertoire, this is one book that delivers its promise."
Sean Marsh, CHESS Magazine:
"The highly original analysis inspired me to make The Lion my main weapon for Black"
Paul Kane, Manchester Chess Federation:
"An interesting, thought-provoking opening book which will equip you with a little-known, under-regarded defence against 1.e4."
GM Paul Motwani, The Scotsman:
"I hope to add my name to the list of players who champion the Black side (..) Packed with hundreds of fascinating illustrative annotated games which help the reader to acquire knwoledge of the whole opening and develop a fine feel for it."
"A solid and serious opening (..) with a remarkable popularity among amateur players, which is sometimes being played and analysed by grandmasters as well."
Martin Rieger, FreeChess:
"The authors are quite objective: if White always only plays the very best moves, he will have a slight edge. But what does a slight theoretical edge matter, if players who regularly apply the Black Lion-strategy will understand the resulting middlegame positions better than their opponents?"
Cor Janssen, PZC:
"A splendid book, a goldmine for the real chess lover"
Marshtower Chess Reviews:
"I'm sure club players will find plenty of interest in this impressive book. 'The Lion' is an absolute ideal weapon and this is the ultimate guide to its intricacies."
Stefan Bücker, Kaissiber Magazine:
"In many respects a brilliant piece of work"