Pleasant rambling reminiscences for old hands and easy and rewarding reading for the novice is this enlightening bit of chess miscellany by the president of the American Chess Masters and author of Modern Chess Strategy (1945) -- (no relation to the great Emanuel Lasker). Opening with some odds and ends in fact and legend about the origins of the game, Mr. Lasker advances with tours of ""chess countries"" -- developments, innovators and players. A master of the middle game, Mr. Lasker then discusses the aesthetic, scientific and mathematical aspects of the royal game with a brilliant defense of its stimulating qualities. There is also some virtuoso work with candida of Emanuel Lasker, Capablanca and Alekine, men with whom the author has played; and fascinating anecdotes about famous amateur chess players; Napoleon (poor), Benjamin Franklin (who drew moral lessons thereby) and King Ferdinand of Spain (whose benevolent mood after winning a difficult game resulted in his permission to allow Columbus to carry on). The chapters at the end of the book contain rules and pats on the back for beginners. Plus sales for those who would like to learn.