Hikaru No Go

Hikaru No Go was my very first manga, and I really enjoyed it. I’ve seen that purists take exception to some details of the translation, but these problems sped past me without ever causing me to look askance. And it was fun to learn to read back to front (from a Western point of view).

The story itself is about a typical young boy who becomes the unwilling host for the spirit of a long-dead Go master. He’s constantly arguing with this fellow (Sai, the Go master, is constantly referred to as being male in the text, though the drawings are very effeminate) about whether or not they’ll play Go. Hikaru, the protagonist, doesn’t know the first thing about Go, not even how to hold the stones, so he causes quite a commotion when he sits down for his first game and soundly thrashes the resident top-gun, thanks to Sai’s telling him where to play.

Mixed in with all this is a bit about the game. Apparently in Japan this series has created something of a ressurgence of interest in Go among young people. In the US, only the first two books have been published, and finding the second one is proving difficult. And I’m surprised to find myself really wanting to find it so I can learn what happens next in this ‘comic book’ (as my mom would call it).

So now I’m looking to branch out. Anyone have any manga suggestions for me?

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