Wednesday, September 28, 2005

Kyu Review: Nihon Ki-in Handbook of Proverbs

DON'T PANIC! You can get it from Yutopian for $15.50 shipped.

Book Summary
Title: The Nihon Ki-in Handbook of Proverbs
Publisher & ISBN: Yutopian Press, 1889554243
Price & Sources: $15.50 shipped from Yutopian
ChiyoDad's Rank Suitability Assessment: Introductory to Intermediate
ChiyoDad's Rating: 5/5 - Add it to your library

There are folks who struggle to find enough time to study Go. For me, even simple articles from need to be thoughtfully digested in a quiet hour or more, with a sharp pencil in my hand and a goban at the ready (chai or latte are optional).

The Handbook of Proverbs is an excellent book to have for those shorter moments when you'd like to get new ideas to stengthen your game. These past days, I've taken it to my bedside for those last few minutes before the lights go off. I like this book because I can just jump to any proverb (as opposed to reading the book from front to back to absorb the concepts in a linear and systematic fashion). Most of the proverbs are illustrated showing correct and incorrect applications and, sometimes, variations.

Good Go players know that they shouldn't apply proverbs blindly. One needs to assess the regional and whole-board situation carefully to see if the proverb's guidance will be helpful. Proverbs give you ideas to consider when the right situation develops on the board.

The book contains over 150 proverbs and is divided into 11 chapters:
  1. Basic Moves and Concepts
  2. Good Shape and Bad
  3. Playing Ko
  4. The Opening
  5. Joseki
  6. Territorial Frameworks
  7. Life and Death
  8. Running, Connecting and Capturing
  9. Clever Moves, Forcing Moves, and Sacrifices
  10. A Guide to Fighting
  11. A Potpourri of Proverbs
This book says Volume One on the cover. I think that's because it's the first volume of Yutopian's Nihon Ki-in handbook series and not because there are other proverbs books that follow.

Cheaper Alternatives
I hear you. If money grew on trees, we'd all have a huge library of Go books next to our desks (not to mention a top-of-the line goban from Kuroki Goishi Ten).

Sensei's Library has its own collection of proverbs and most of these are also illustrated. I counted 95 on their summary page excluding the generic proverbs which don't apply just to Go. If your wallet is so thin that it can be measured with a micrometer, or if you prefer just doing all your reading online, this collection is your best alternative.


At 8:11 PM, September 28, 2005, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Thanks for the review


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