Sunday, June 17, 2012

# 10, 11, 13, 15-22, 24-28, and 30-34 The remainder of the Hikaru no Go series

I got sucked into the Hikaru no Go series. Being manga (Japanese comics) they read really fast. The series gets intense about half-way through, when Hikaru goes through the Insei school (to prepare young go prodigies to be professionals) and then takes the exam to become a professional go player. The crux of the drama pivots on the fact that the Insei (that is the students themselves) have become good friends, but then are pitted against each other in competition for the few professional slots that open up each year. Gripping stuff.

From this series I learned a lot about how the professional go world runs and the culture around it. The characters in the series were interesting, but in the end they all suffer from an inflated ego and over-riding will to win, to the extent of feeling compelled to grind down their opponents morale (even when that opponent is a child several decades their junior). Makes for good stories, but probably not the kind of people you would like to rub elbows with regularly.

Recommended if you are interested in go, or interested in becoming interested in go.

3 of 5 stars.

If nothing else, the series artificially inflated my number of books read this year. :-)

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