The Last Gambit
By: Om Swami
Publisher: Harper Element
Publication Date: February 2017
Success by design is infinitely better than a win by chance. Vasu Bhatt is fourteen years old when a mysterious old man spots him at a chess tournament and offers to coach him, on two simple but strange conditions: he would not accompany his student to tournaments, and there was to be no digging into his past. Initially resentful, Vasu begins to gradually understand his master’s mettle.
Over eight years, master and student come to love and respect each other, but the two conditions remain unbroken – until Vasu confronts and provokes the old man. Meanwhile, their hard work and strategy pay off: Vasu qualifies for the world chess championship. But can he make it all the way without his master by his side?
Inspiring, moving and mercurial, The Last Gambit is a beautiful coming of age tale in a uniquely Indian context.
Saving a few times, like when he was sleeping, living with Andrei was a continuous challenge. He was just not designed with any sense of living in a world sans chess. He couldn’t even pour tea without spilling it in the saucer. He would never remember to turn the gas off after cooking. And the only thing he knew how to cook was an omelette. It was scary to be in the same car with him because he would just stop anywhere and start making notes on some game.
He would forget his wallet in the restaurant and keys in his car. It’s hard to imagine that the genius Andrei, immaculate on the chessboard, would be so clumsy in real life. The man who could think through lengthy lines of variations in his head could not string together two words to hold a conversation. He never spoke to my parents. He would say he didn’t have any conversational skills. Surely, he could have learnt these skills, if only he had made an effort.
I kept my hopes up for six long years and then one day I realized that ‘if only’ doesn’t work with people like Andrei. If it could, he wouldn’t be Andrei then.
Om Swami is a monk who lives in a remote place in the Himalayan foothills. He has a bachelor degree in business and an MBA from Sydney, Australia. Swami served in executive roles in large corporations around the world. He founded and led a profitable software company with offices in San Francisco, New York, Toronto, London, Sydney and India.
Om Swami completely renounced his business interests to pursue a more spiritual life. He is the bestselling author of Kundalini: An Untold Story, A Fistful of Love and If Truth Be Told: A Monk’s Memoir.
His blog omswami.com is read by millions all over the world.
Disclaimer: The synopsis and cover picture were pulled from the book’s Goodreads page. Neither belong to us. The author info, book excerpt, and more were provided by YA Bound Book Tours. Tour Hosted by Garima Om.