Tactimania is a puzzle book with a difference. Grandmaster Glenn Flear makes sure the puzzles are unfamiliar to the reader by selecting them only from games played by himself or his wife Christine. The puzzles start at a moderate level then get steadily more difficult. The reader will be challenged by the puzzles and entertained by the manga-style illustrations that feature throughout.
Glenn Flear is a respected grandmaster, author and coach. Early in his career, Glenn achieved one of the greatest-ever chess surprises when, as a last minute substitute, he won the London 1986 tournament ahead of a host of famous players. Glenn and Christine married during this event! Christine is a five-time French Women's Champion and their son James, a computer artist, created the illustrations.
ISBN: 978-1-906552-98-5 - 264 pages - Published 3 June 2011
"The vast majority of positions were unfamiliar to me, and that's obviously important if we are testing ourselves. The cartoon characters from the cover appeared throughout the book which I - as well as my kids - found appealing. But don't imagine this isn't a serious work: the hardest test positions are as tough as any from Neishtadt."
Ronan Bennett and GM Daniel King, while adding Tactimania to The Guardian's Book of the Year shortlist (full column)
"The types who like their puzzle books austere may not see the point, but I liked the pictures, with their gentle humour sprinkled throughout. Along with the clean presentation of the puzzles, it makes for an attractive book all-round... Initially I didn't find any [of the puzzles] especially difficult, but they quickly became more challenging, and the trickier ones are marked as such."
GM Luke McShane, New in Chess
"Quality Chess regularly puts on the market something that makes the heart of every chess player happy but also forces the student to work. Glenn Flear's Tactimania delivers hundreds of puzzles for the reader, arranged by theme and increasing in difficulty - don't try to solve them all in a row! Of course it's also a wonderful book for anyone who gives chess lessons."
Bab Wilders, Nederlands Dagblad
"Humorous, full colour cartoons used to liven up the text... The major selling point of the book is the freshness of the material. Not everyone will be particularly familiar with the games of GM Flear, so the vast majority of the positions should be new to readers. So instead of solving the same old positions time and again, readers will find their skills stretched more by this book than by various others."
Sean Marsh, (full review)
"Overall, Tactimania is an above average tactics book. It is nicely produced on glossy, thick-stock paper; includes challenging puzzles that are likely to be unknown to the reader; offers fully annotated solutions with in depth explanations; all presented in a colorful and enjoyable manner. It is probably best for the prospective reader to be rated 1600 or higher, but anyone can benefit from using this book to develop their 'gut-feeling' for tactics. [5/6 stars]"
Michael McGuerty, ChessCafe
"A somewhat unusual tactical puzzle book... Charming, entertaining, and useful if you like to solve tactical puzzles"
Arne Moll, ChessVibes (full review)