Professor Childermass cites this champion’s name when he and Johnny force themselves to stay awake through game after game of chess (The Curse of the Blue Figurine; 154).


A native of Moscow, Alexander Alekhine (1892-1946) was a World Chess Champion (1927-35, 1937-46) and often is considered one of the greatest players ever of the game. Known for his fierce and imaginative attacking style, Alekhine is highly regarded as a chess writer and theoretician and gave his name to Alekhine's Defence, a series of opening moves.

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