Synopses & Reviews
Freshman Daniel Pratzer gets a chance to prove himself when the chess team invites him and his father to a weekend-long parent-child tournament. Daniel, thinking that his father is a novice, cant understand why his teammates want so badly for them to participate. Then he finds out the truth: as a teen, his father was one of the most promising young players in America, but the pressures of the game pushed him too far, and he had to give up chess to save his own life and sanity. Now, thirty years later, Mr. Pratzer returns to the game to face down an old competitor and the same dark demons that lurk in the corners of a mind stretched by the demands of the game. Daniel was looking for acceptance—but the secrets he uncovers about his father will force him to make some surprising moves himself, in Grandmaster by David Klass.
"Like Searching for Bobby Fischer, this novel about competitive chess encapsulates the intensity of the game and the players who become obsessed with it. After joining the chess club at his private school, freshman Daniel Pratzer is surprised when his super-achiever co-captains invite him to participate in a New York City father-son tournament. An even bigger shock is their claim that Daniel's father was once a famous grandmaster of the game. When confronted with this information, Daniel's father admits the rumor is true but remains secretive about his past; reluctantly, he agrees to come out of retirement for the event. The tale of his playing years and why he quit dramatically unfurls at the three-day tournament, where Daniel watches in awe as his father transforms from a mild-mannered man into a cutthroat competitor. Klass (Stuck on Earth) builds significant tension as Daniel's father begins to unravel, and the nobility of the team's members is tested. Daniel learns something about the nature of competition and the values he and his father need to hold dearest in this emotionally taut story. Ages 12 up. Agent: Aaron M. Priest Literary Agency." Publishers Weekly (Starred Review) Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved.
Praise for the work of David Klass
"Daniel learns something about the nature of competition and the values he and his father need to hold dearest in this emotionally taut story."--Publishers Weekly, STARRED REVIEW
“Truly intelligent storytelling for teens.”—The Miami Herald
“Guys looking for nonstop action . . . will eat this up.”—Kirkus Reviews
“Incredibly original, vitally important, and one hell of a ride.”—David Baldacci
"Fast-paced, inspired writing." - Booklist
* "Like Searching for Bobby Fischer, this novel about competitive chess encapsulates the intensity of the game and the players who become obsessed with it . . . [An] emotionally taut story." —Publishers Weekly, starred review "Drama unfolds deliberately . . . building up to an exciting, climactic endgame . . . Smart, real, and full of feeling." —School Library Journal "Fast-paced, inspired writing makes this perfect for fans of John Feinsteins The Sports Beat series." —Booklist "Klass is in excellent control of his plot, moving swiftly to the tournament action . . . and steadily closing in on the final showdown." —Bulletin of the Center for Children's Books
About the Author
David Klass, an acclaimed screenwriter and the author of many popular YA novels, was a competitive chess tournament player in the post-Bobby Fischer era. He gave up the game at nineteen and only returned to it decades later, when his two children began to play in school tournaments. He lives in New York City.