The Edward R Murrow School is located in Brooklyn, New York. An unconventional group of kids at an unconventional school located in the heart of the most unconventional city in America is making headlines, with a chess club. Murrow has one of the most successful youth chess teams in history. But what transforms a bunch of underprivileged children into the best chess players in the USA? Is it the school, the coach, hot-house tuition, or just sheer genius kids? Michael Weinreb was determined to find out. So he spent a year with the team, following them from cash games in Washington Square Park to state tournaments, from meeting President Bush in the White House to the national championships, discovering what makes them so special. Meet Sal Bercys, Lithuanian self-proclaimed 'stupid, lazy genius'; Oscar Santana, Puerto Rican aspiring card shark; Alex Lenderman, barely five feet tall, painfully shy and the second-highest-rated fifteen-year-old chess player in the United States; and, coach Eliot Weiss - a former semi-pro ice-hockey player turned maths teacher.
They're a cross-section of New York: immigrants, natives, rich, poor, black, white, show-offs and shrinking violets, kids who couldn't be more different except when it comes to one thing - chess. "The Kings of New York" is the story of how a group of kids battle their differences to come together as a team, and how they face their victories and defeats. It's a story of growing up, of the joys and pains, hopes and disappointments of adolescence. Above all, it's the story of a handful of gifted misfits searching for the silence and order and strange beauty that can be found within those sixty-four squares on a chess board.
Buy The Kings of New York book by Michael Weinreb from Australia's Online Independent Bookstore, Boomerang Books.
(213mm x 135mm x 23mm)
Yellow Jersey Press
Publisher: Vintage Publishing
Country of Publication:
Author Biography - Michael Weinreb
Michael Weinreb's work has appeared in the New York Times, the Boston Globe, the Los Angeles Times, the Dallas Morning News and ESPN.com. In his career as a journalist, he has been named best sportswriter in Ohio by the Associated Press, nominated for a Pulitzer Prize and cited three times in The Best American Sports Writing anthology. He lives in New York City.