Now available! Silver Queen.
Maria Ivanka's new book about her life and career.

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- The past 40 years of chess history
- Chess Olympics, World Championships, Other tournaments
- Gossips, intrigues, scandals
- Games and photos
- Family matters


The turn of the millennium and the fifty years of my life inspired me to evaluate the past. As the years pass by, I think about my chess career with more and more nostalgia. It feels great to be lost in reveries of the good old days and the glamour of the successful years. After so many years, the intrigues and failures are less painful, and hopefully the old stories will not hurt the feelings of anyone referred to in the book, either. As I journey back in time, I occasionally quote from my mother's diary, printed italic. The fairytale-sounding title refers to the trophy I won a couple of times in Holland, and also to our 'constant' silver medals at the Chess Olympics. Along with my career, I follow the last forty years of chess history, the important chess events, Olympics, individual World Championships, spiced with about hundred decisive games. If replaying the games does not tickle your brain cells, I invite you to an interesting look behind the scenes, to find out what happened beyond the chessboard! Beside skirmishes, I cover a wide range of events, from fantastic travel experiences to the birth of my children, from my inner struggle to the delicate connection between sport and politics. The Illustrations section at the end of the book contains pictures about many memorable occasions.

What made me write this book? I had countless questions I was seeking answers to, doubts I could not overcome, and an inner drive that forced me to speak out against the spreading moral decline. I hope my book may serve as the testimony of experience with both good and bad, providing an added boost to younger generations to reflect on the past and make the future better.

As I review the events systematically, I might get closer to the 'solution'. Our life is like a coordinate system. As the years fly by, we converge asymptotically to one of the axes, but can never quite reach it.

I wrote my book under difficult circumstances, since the majority of the work was completed in Austin, while most of the information resources - newspapers, magazines, and albums - happened to be in Hungary. While writing, I recalled the witty quote from Mark Twain, "When I was younger I could remember anything, whether it happened or not; but I am getting old, and soon I shall remember only the latter." However, my book is based on my extensive correspondence, written soon after the events happened. Therefore, my adventures are not at all dim memories, but revived, fresh experiences.

- Maria Ivanka

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