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Readers' Advisory: The Queen's Gambit: Home

Readers' Advisory

Readers’ Advisory
Shelley Marcus, Professor, Reference Librarian, Chaffey College

The Queen’s Gambit by Walter Tevis.   RosettaBooks Publisher. 2014.

Welcome to Readers’ Advisory!  Did you know that reading for pleasure increases student and all-around success?

This book is a real page-turner, perfect for getting “in the zone,” delving deep into a story.  It is about an orphan, Beth Harmon, who was introduced to drugs due to the orphanage’s practice of keeping the children tranquilized.  She discovers the game of chess from the janitor, who plays it by himself in the basement.  If this sounds familiar, you may have heard of the series on Netflix by the same title.

Although this book involves chess, you don’t have to know anything about the game to enjoy it.  Will Beth’s concentration and determination overcome her dependence on drugs and alcohol?

Read the first few pages and you’ll be hooked!

Some thoughts to ponder:

  • Will Beth’s loneliness and feelings of inferiority get the best of her?
  • How does she deal with anxiety and perfectionism?
  • What role do her friends play in the story?

Here is a five-minute video that will introduce you to the book.

Here is the permalink to The Queen’s Gambit.

Questions or comments?  Contact me at

Librarian Shelley Marcus

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