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I'm planning to broaden my endgame knowledge. I got the Practical chess endings by Keres which seems like a pretty nice book. Lets say I will learn all the pawn and rook endings for start. The big question is: does it make me a better endgame player or does it make me better in solving Keres' book?
P.S: Sometimes I set up endgame positions from books in Fritz. It deviates from the book(probably plays slightly worse moves) and beats me.
if you work on endings, you'll become better at endings. :)
PCE is a good book. Clear explanations.
It also increases your overall skills in chess playing. Queen endgames educates you in working with a queen, rook endgames educates you in working with a rook and so on with knight endgames, bishop endgames, pawn endgames and endgames with combinations of different pieces.
It would be more difficult to study the different pieces in a complicated position with many pieces on the board. By studying endgames you can focus on one piece and get a good grip on that one.
And in an endgame with more pieces on the board, but still a lot simpler than the middlegame, you can focus on how to make a "team work" with two pieces and get your skills increased in that regard.
Furthermore endgame knowledge gives you a better skill on when it is a good idea to exchange pieces in the middlegame in order to transform the game into an endgame.
PCE is the book I always recommend.
Keres tried to give the reader as much practical knowledge as possible to handle the technical endgames well.
Study it, it will repay you! (It will also give you a foundation on which to move onto more advanced books, eg. the modern classic is Dvoretsky's Endgame Manual.)
I agree with the comment about gaining a feel for the pieces through endgames. A fun endgame is the 2Ns v P endgame. It is so rare it could be said it isn't worth spending time on, yet wonderful to study to see how the knights move and also how they work as a team with the king to force mate. It's very tricky!
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