200 Endgame Problems, by Shirae Haruhiko. Slate & Shell; 2003.

This is, obviously, a collection of problems. The first section, "Basic Problems", contains 100 problems of a fairly didactic bent, introducing common endgame tesujis, with variations of the same tesuji appearing in several problems in a row to hammer it in. The second section, "Application Problems", is both harder and wider-ranging: the tesujis are more complex, life-and-death plays a much larger role, and there are groups of problems on various broad themes (exactly when can you force a seki in the corner, a few counting problems thrown in out of the blue, etc.). There are also three interludes, giving examples from games and counting examples.

It's pretty good, and certainly we need more endgame books in English. The first half is suitable for single-digit kyu players, and is nicely focused. The second half gets into the low dan level (though strong kyu-level players would also get something out of it), and its lack of organization and the way it tried to shoehorn everything into a problem format bothered me at times. (Don't get me wrong, though: there lots of good problems in the second half.) It complements The Endgame well enough, if my dim memories of that book are to be trusted; I still prefer Get Strong at the Endgame, though that book isn't directly comparable to this one, either.

cover pic

david carlton <carlton@bactrian.org>

Last modified: Sun Nov 2 18:28:01 PST 2003