Coming of Age “202 Checkmates”

In the story of 202 Checkmates we follow a 11 year old daughter trying to defeat her old man at chess. It is a classic coming of age story with the girl growing up and seeing the hardships her parents are going through and how she deals with them. The reason we read a common story like this is because of how the author portrayed chess in the fathers and daughters relationship. Every parent has some outlet with their kids whether it’s a sport, instrument, books, computers, video games or chess. This outlet serves as a safe place where kids and their parents can talk about something they both enjoy and can make conversation about it. Chess gave that opportunity for the father with him and his daughter playing everyday even after arguing with his wife. By playing a simple game the daughter now had a goal to accomplish and the father had a way to break some of the tension in their family. Chess taught the father about life from his dad and now is passing it on to his daughter even though shes caught up in playing the actual game. The father was trying to teach his daughter that chess was more about representing life then playing and we know she learned that at the end when she let her father win. The daughter learned to sacrifice her win to see her dad happy which is something the father wanted from the start so even though she could’ve won, the father won in a different way.

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