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Book review: Matthew Apsokardu's Tales from the Western Generation

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How pleased was I to receive an advance copy of  Matthew Apsokardu's Tales from the Western Generation: Untold Stories and Firsthand History from Karate's Golden Age?!

Many of you will be familiar with the author through his groundbreaking blog, Ikigai Way.  I can tell you right off the bat that this blog is one of the main inspirations for my own (although I hasten to add that I have never sought to cover the same ground that Matt has!).

With his book, Matt has done what no one before him has managed to do, and that is fill the gaping void of historical accounts provided  by pioneering Western karateka.  Almost every karate book I've read has accounts from Japanese masters, but those in the West somehow seem forgotten.  Even after 70 years of karate in countries like the United States and those in Europe, karate history inevitably focuses on first hand accounts from Okinawa and the Japanese mainland.

Finally, someone (the very capable and thorough Matt Apsokardu) has rec…