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Subject: Which book(s) next? rss

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Okay, I've read and now pretty much understand Iwamoto's 'Go for Beginners'. Which books should I look at next for stuff like basic joseki, 20-25k life-and-death etc?
 
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Bertrand Russell
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Lessons in the Fundamentals of Go by Kageyama Toshiro was good, as was The Second Book of Go by Richard Bozulich. I wouldn't worry about joseki for a while though. For problems I recommend http://goproblems.com/ and the Graded Go Problems series. There is one for 25-20k. The AGA has a nice list at http://www.usgo.org/resources/books.asp#intermediate.
 
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Dan Dolan
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I recently picked up:

Go! More than a game

by Peter Shotwell

It's a pretty good book on strategy, tactics and the history of Go.
 
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Billy McBoatface
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I think Kageyama's book is too hard for 20k-25k. More like around 10k is the best place to read it for the first time. I'm 1k and still find it valuable to reread.

I would second both the "second book of go" and also (especially) the "graded go problems" series. I also found Hideo's "Opening Theory Made Easy" very useful in the double digit kyu range.
 
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Pedro Pérez
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I think "The second book of go" is the best next choice after the introductions.

After that, there are several books in the "Elementary Go Series" worth reading (6 in total over major subjects of the game), but better wait until you have played some games (maybe 30 or 40), then you would get better the theory

I would also read Kageyama's book, I readed it when I was beginning and, even if there are concepts a little too overwhelming for beginners, it helped me A LOT. This is a book that I read once or two each year to refresh the fundamentals.
 
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Colin Clay
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Books are good, but there are lots of great online resources for beginners.

Once I had read a book to learn the rules, I found these tools helped me more than books until about 15k.

www.goproblems.com

http://gtl.xmp.net/

http://senseis.xmp.net/

Also, play lots of 9x9 for practice, you will learn much more quickly.

KGS is the best go server IMO.
 
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Bwian, just
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I recommend the "Learn to Play Go" series by Janice Kim and Jeong Soo-hyun to most folks. The second volume, The Way of the Moving Horse, was the most useful to me. It explains relationships between stones in a way that clicked quickly. For 20-25 kyu I would guess you want to start with Volume 1, but then I didn't learn words like joseki and life-and-death until I was above that level in the first place, so that might be too basic...
 
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Thanks all. I've decided to get the Second Book of Go and the first two books of the Graded Problems to begin with.
 
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Andrew Brannan
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Bwian wrote:
I recommend the "Learn to Play Go" series by Janice Kim and Jeong Soo-hyun to most folks. The second volume, The Way of the Moving Horse, was the most useful to me. It explains relationships between stones in a way that clicked quickly. For 20-25 kyu I would guess you want to start with Volume 1, but then I didn't learn words like joseki and life-and-death until I was above that level in the first place, so that might be too basic...


Second this recommendation. The fifth book, The Palace of Memory, really shines in terms of the more abstract theories of shape.
 
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After reading this posting, I have now bought:

1. "Go for Beginners" by Kaoru Iwamoto
2. "The Second Book of Go" by Richard Bozulich

Which book(s) should I get next?
 
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Billy McBoatface
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Depends. You didn't say your strength or where you want to improve, so it is hard to recommend!

If you think tsume-go (fights) are the weak part of your game, get the graded go problems series. Once you can do all of them fairly easily, just buy more tsume-go books.

If you think the opening is weak, "Opening Theory Made Easy" by Hideo is good for 10k and weaker players. Once you are around 5k-ish, I'd say look at "Whole-Board Thinking in Joseki) or "500 opening problems" (I think that's the name) from Kiseido to improve your opening. There are not quite dictionaries, instead whole board joseki problems, they will teach you joseki more effectively than a dictionary would (but still they are far from beginner books). Joseki dictionaries are mostly only useful (to me) when I'm reviewing a game and wondering what the recommended answers to an opening move are.

If your strength is 10k or stronger, then "Lessons in the Fundamentals" by Kageyama is great. This covers a lot of general topics, but is good reading.
 
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Quote:
After reading this posting, I have now bought:

1. "Go for Beginners" by Kaoru Iwamoto
2. "The Second Book of Go" by Richard Bozulich

Which book(s) should I get next?
Quote:
Depends. You didn't say your strength or where you want to improve, so it is hard to recommend!
I'm pretty new to Go. I don't know what my kyu would be. I've read these two books and played maybe 15 or 20 games, mostly 9x9. So far I've played only against the computer, or against my wife who is also a complete beginner. After I understand the game a little more I plan to play online at KGS.

I supposed all aspects of my game could be improved. So I guess another general book would be good?

Or should I now get books on specific areas like life/death, opening, joseki, tesuji, etc.?

That book Lessons in the Fundamentals of Go by Kageyama Toshiro sounds like another good general book. Maybe this should be the third book I buy. Could someone give me a summary and/or the table of contents for this book? I couldn't found much detail about it at Amazon or the publisher's site.


 
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Bertrand Russell
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cull wrote:
Could someone give me a summary and/or the table of contents for this book? I couldn't found much detail about it at Amazon or the publisher's site.


Chapter 1 - Ladders and Nets
Chapter 2 - Cutting and Connecting
Chapter 3 - The Stones Go Walking
Chapter 4 - The Struggle to Get Ahead
Chapter 5 - Territory and Spheres of Influence
Chapter 6 - Lecturing on NHK-TV
Chapter 7 - Life and Death
Chapter 8 - How to Study Joseki
Chapter 9 - Proper and Improper Moves
Chapter 10 - Tesuji
Chapter 11 - Endgame Pointers
Appendix - Game Commentary: Beating the Meijin

There are a few comments about it here:

http://www.gobooks.info/g28.html

I got that link from:
http://senseis.xmp.net/?LessonsInTheFundamentalsOfGo


It's different than the other Go books that I've read in that it's not just a technical lecture. It's worth owning either way.

Disclaimer: I'm extremely weak, so my opinion should be taken with a grain of salt.
 
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cull wrote:
I'm pretty new to Go. I don't know what my kyu would be. I've read these two books and played maybe 15 or 20 games, mostly 9x9.

I would guess that puts you somewhere in the 30-28 kyu range. For reference, it took me about 50 games (including plenty of 19x19) to reach 25 kyu and another 50 or so after that to reach 20 kyu (though plenty of people progress faster than I did).

Iwamoto's 'Go for Beginners' took me up to about 25 kyu with no other reading. But it was slow progress, and I strongly, strongly suggest that you get volume 1 of the Graded Go Problems. Reading that alongside Iwamoto will make you progress much faster.

I'm still getting plenty of mileage out of 'The Second book of Go' at 20 kyu. It's worth reading the section on handicap games at a lower level, but until you know everything in Iwamoto back to front I think the Second Book will be fairly opaque.

I've also been reading 'Tesuji' by James Davies. This is a fair bit more complex than the Second Book, and is only just starting to make sense to me. Actually, I suspect that doing the first 2 volumes of Graded Go Problems was what turned on the light for me.

cull wrote:
I supposed all aspects of my game could be improved. So I guess another general book would be good?

Or should I now get books on specific areas like life/death, opening, joseki, tesuji, etc.?

The general books you have at the moment should do you for the next year or so. I think you should concentrate on life and death right now, and again I recommend Graded Go Problems volume 1 (which has lots of tesuji and opening problems in it anyway).

Also, don't wait to go online, as it's a great way to pick up tesuji and joseki basics, which are hard to learn from a book. There are plenty of raw beginners to play with, so just start a bunch of 30 kyu games and see how you go.
 
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Billy McBoatface
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cull wrote:
I'm pretty new to Go. I don't know what my kyu would be. I've read these two books and played maybe 15 or 20 games, mostly 9x9. So far I've played only against the computer, or against my wife who is also a complete beginner. After I understand the game a little more I plan to play online at KGS.
I'd say, drop the books for now, get same games (especially 19x19 against a few different human opponents) under your belt. Then start reading again! Studying books is a good way to improve quickly, but you really need to have playing experience alongside that.

For example, hearing that "a pair of 3rd line stones with two spaces in between can't be cut" is typical advice to beginners, but until you have actually played that out a few times, you won't know when this is valuable. Similarly, you need to play to see where your weak points are - do your opponent kill all your groups? Then study life & death. Do your groups mostly live, but you end up behind on territory? Then study fuseki. Etc.

Best of luck. :-)
 
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