I'm a club player around 2100 FIDE rating trying to learn the Sicilian Sveshnikov, with the black pieces, for long time controls (2 hours/game). What books do I need to read in order to learn this opening properly?

Themes I would like to see in the books:

  • How to deal with most common variations
  • Possible transpositions
  • Ideas in middle game
  • Pawn structure and how to approach it
  • Traps to be aware of
  • Common endgames
  • 2
    Good question! A good answer to this should be applicable to many other openings, and not just be "Grandmaster Repertoire 18: The Sveshnikov, Kotronias 2014". The only thing is that "reading books" probably isn't the best way of studying an opening, it doesn't engage your brain actively enough. And the question has overlap with "how do I study chess"... I'll think about an answer. Commented Oct 20, 2014 at 12:14
  • Yeah, for advanced non-masters players, the Grandmaster Repertoire series has almost everything you would want from an opening book. The question is completely different when you're looking for a starting book. Commented Oct 20, 2014 at 18:37
  • 1
    How would an answer to " What books do I need to read in order to learn [the Sicilian Sveshnikov] properly?" be applicable to many other openings? That's a very specific question, not an invitation to write an essay on learning openings. Apart from the very new and surely excellent Kotronias, there is a "Starting out"-book by John Cox, which, though somewhat dated, might contain more and more basic explanations. But I have read neither. I did read "The Sveshnikov reloaded" and it's pretty decent. Commented Dec 4, 2014 at 14:33
  • Books is a great way to learn about an opening, the best is the combination of a good book such as the GM repertoire Kotronias one in sync with a recent database (Mega 2015) along with implementing the opening in online blitz or standard games or even in real life then checking the book or database to see where you could improve upon in the variation, many experienced coaches have recommended this method to me and from personal experience it is a great way to learn an opening. The only downside is that you learn lines and sometimes forget to think for yourself so be aware of that.
    – sco-ish
    Commented Feb 4, 2015 at 9:07
  • Starting Out : Sicilian Sveshnikov is a book for "starting out" worth reading.
    – magd
    Commented May 25, 2017 at 10:49

2 Answers 2


I think one of the best books on the subject has been written by Rogozenko.

The Sveshnikov Reloaded explains the ideas very well with plenty of textual analysis and not only pages of long variations with only Informant type evaluation symbols. I have the book at home (even though I mainly play Najdorf and accelerated Dragon Sicilians), and I remember that one of things that pleases me most in this book is Rogozenko's clear explanations of the subtleties of move order tricks.

The first edition is a bit outdated and might run into refutations, especially in the tactical lines (such as the bishop sacrifice line). But if I am not mistaken there is a "recent" (2012?) second edition.

It is the Quality Chess edition. According to me, one of the best editing houses around.

  1. Sveshnikov Reloaded - Dorian Rogenzenko
  2. The Complete Sveshnikov Sicilian - Yuri Yakovich
  3. The Sveshnikov Sicilian - Mikhail Krasenkov
  4. The Easiest Sicilian - Atanas Kolev and Trajko Nedev.

My personal favourites are 4. and 2.

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