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5.0 out of 5 stars Excellent and Accessible Introduction to Dan-level concepts, 3 July 2012
This review is from: More Go by example: Improving single-digit kyu play (Paperback)
"More Go by Example: Improving Single Digit Kyu Play" is, as the title suggests, aimed at players 1 kyu-9 kyu (SDK) with the objective of providing an introduction to the kind of play that separates Dan-level from Kyu-level players. Although I am unqualified to comment about whether it succeeds in this objective for low-SDK players, there is certainly enough here to improve my game by several stones were I able to implement it.

The book contains a number of chapters each identifying a general principle ("Looking Beyond the Immediate Position", "Whole Board Balance" and the like) and these chapters are broken into several examples each, using relevant fragments of games to illustrate each point in several ways. The practice here of taking example situations and following them for only a few moves to illustrate the principle seems an excellent teaching tool, allowing for repeated viewing of a single principle in different situations with the hope that you might be able to identify a similar situation "in the wild" in one of your games.

There are a huge number diagrams in the book, with passages of play illustrated using a single diagram for each move. This is the first time I have seen this format and I found it difficult to maintain context while constantly refocusing on the next diagram each move, but this is largely a matter of personal taste and is certainly no worse than the "one diagram with a lot of numbers" format.

The author clearly has a pet issue concerning short time limits in games and the automatic and unthinking play that can result from lack of time or just from failure to think sufficiently deeply about positions. I feel that much of this is tilting at windmills as it is a simple fact that both online and tournament games are played at a faster speed than previously and there is probably no going back (I am not happy about it either). But aside from the odd comment here and there decrying the superficiality of blitz play the examples are all fairly chosen and contain excellent examples of the kinds of mistakes that an SDK could make at any time control and in which bypassing the obvious move by giving things just a bit more thought could pay huge dividends in a game.

In my opinion, kyu and dan level players differ in several areas: Dan players read (calculate) better; they have a larger database of patterns in their memory that indicate to them where a non-obvious move might work; and they have a better whole-board and strategic understanding of the game, enabling them to calculate with more sophisticated aims in mind. Given limited thinking time, knowing when and what to read is as important as calculating well. While this book will not improve your calculating ability, it will help players at my level start to build an understanding of those critical factors and to identify moments where one must read more deeply into a position.

SDK represents a huge range in playing ability (a player at the lower end of this range could give 8 stones to one at the upper end, after all), and I do not know how well it covers the low-SDK range. Overall, however, I found much food for thought and I am sure that several of these ideas could improve my game by several stones if I could apply them consistently.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Great GO book series, 24 May 2014
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This review is from: More Go by example: Improving single-digit kyu play (Paperback)
Neil Moffatt may not be a Dan rank GO player but his ability for analysis of GO games and lessons in how to play GO is that of a master. He has the insight and the gift to explain GO much better than some books written by professionals.
Definitely recommended book and his previous one for double digit kyu players 'GO by Example'.
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4.0 out of 5 stars good book, 14 Jan. 2015
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This review is from: More Go by example: Improving single-digit kyu play (Paperback)
Birthday present for my husband - he is learning to play Go
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More Go by example: Improving single-digit kyu play
More Go by example: Improving single-digit kyu play by Mr Neil Moffatt (Paperback - 12 May 2012)
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