GoGoD Books

Many GoGoD users have asked why we do not convert our material to paper form. Well, thanks to a tie-up with Slate & Shell, now we have. And as we have much more material than can easily appear on the CD, this is also an opportunity to unlock more of the GoGoD archives.

The first book to appear, in February 2009, was The Go Companion. This is a selection of popular material from our New In Go column combined with newly written material (about 60%) in similar vein, to present a 300-page wide-ranging survey of go culture and history.

The second appeared in June 2009. This was Kamakura, a detailed account of the famous ten-game match between Go Seigen and Kitani Minoru which took place mostly in Kamakura in 1939-41. Extensive biographies of both players and the go, social and political background to the match are followed by complete analysis of all ten games based on over 60 years of pro commentaries we have collected. A special feature of this 200-page book is that its large A4 format makes it possible to read through all the games and variation diagrams comfortably without a board.

The third book to appear was The Go Consultants in September 2009. This describes one of the famous consulation games of the 1930s in which Go Seigen and Kitani Minoru, stars of New Fuseki, took on the top players of the old order, their teachers Suzuki Tamejiro and Segoe Kensaku in a consultation game. The discussions of the two teams were recorded and provide a unique insight into how professionals think.

Final Summit was the fourth book, and the second in the series on all Go Seigen's ten-game matches, of which Kamakura was the first volume. It features his last match, against Takagawa Kaku. This book appeared in November 2009.

Book five was the massive 9-dan Showdown which covers no fewer than three ten-game matches between Go Seigen and Fujisawa Kuranosuke, the first two 9-dans in history. This appeared in early summer, 2010.

In November 2010, the sixth book was the start of a new series on famous games, intended also as a way of filling in gaps in the history of 20th century go. We began with The Meijin's Retirement Game between Honinbo Shusai and Kitani Minoru. The second, in April 2011, was Old Fuseki vs. New Fuseki, describing both the evolution of New Fuseki and also the 1933 game between Honinbo Shusai and Go Seigen.


In April 2011, in collaboration with Anders Kierulf, we also began publishing some books in electronic format for SmartGo Kifu. The first was an extract (four games) from 9-dan Showdown.

As go players ourselves, we understand why books about Go Seigen have a special appeal. Still, it was nice to get or see so many unsolicited comments about Kamakura as soon as it appeared. Here are some.

Some comments on The Go Companion:

Some comments on The Go Consultants:

Some comments on Final Summit:

Some comments on 9-dan Showdown:

Some comments on The Meijin's Retirement Game:

Some comments on Old Fuseki versus New Fuseki:

Some comments on e-books:

Future plans

The fourth book in the ten-game match series will probably feature Iwamoto Kaoru.

To get more information about these books (including sample pages), please visit the Slate & Shell site.

These are not the only books by John Fairbairn and T Mark Hall - only those that came from the GoGoD archives.