Bobby Fischer Comes Home: The Final Years in Iceland, a Saga of Friendship and Lost Illusions

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9789056913816: Bobby Fischer Comes Home: The Final Years in Iceland, a Saga of Friendship and Lost Illusions
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On March 24, 2005, a small plane with Bobby Fischer on board landed at Reykjavik Airport. The arrival in Iceland of the former World Chess Champion was front-page news all over the world. In a ploy to free him from prison in Japan the Icelandic Parliament had granted the American Icelandic citizenship. Fischer had been arrested in Tokyo when the US warrant caught up with him that was issued after he had violated American sanctions against the former Yugoslavia by playing a controversial match against Boris Spassky.

Icelandic chess grandmaster Helgi Olafsson was 15 year old in 1972, when in a sensational match in his home country Bobby Fischer beat Boris Spassky for the world title. Breathlessly, Helgi had followed the match and attended a number of games in the playing hall in Reykjavik. When thirty-three years later his childhood hero was arrested in Tokyo, Olafsson became one of the members of the Committee to Free Bobby Fischer.

Now Fischer returned to Iceland, a country he was never to leave again till his death on January 17, 2008. Olafsson and Fischer developed a unique friendship. Countless hours they spent together, they talked about chess, about life, made trips, played games, had fun, and quarrelled. Bobby Fischer Comes Home tells the story of their complicated friendship and paints an intimate portrait of the last years of the man who many see as the greatest chess player that ever lived.

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Review:

Olafasson's poignant book delivers the fullest account yet of Bobby Fischer's triumphal and tragic years in Iceland with a thoughtful, thorough, and balanced presentation, including topics that transport us beyond the limits of its place and theme. A personal and heartbreaking account.
(John D. Warth, This title is destined to be a classic... ChessCafe.com)

Bobby Fisher Comes Home describes the end of the life of a brilliant chess player with dignity. (Richard Vedder, FIDE Master, Netherlands Schakers.info)

Olafsson doesn't apologize for Fisher in the way some of his other biographers have. A charming aspect of the book is how Olafsson weaves his own biographical details into the narrative.

(Cecil Rosner Winnipeg Free Press)

A fascinating read, in turns poignant and perplexing, and I recommend it wholeheartedly to anyone interested in the second Pride and Sorrow of American Chess.

(Ken Surratt ChessVille)

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