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Light Novel / The Ryuo's Work Is Never Done!

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"Man, Grade Schoolers are the best!"
Yaichi Kuzuryu

Yaichi Kuzuryu is the youngest titleholder in the Shogi world—having won the "Ryuuo" Title, the most prestigious title and an indicator of the strongest Shogi player, at the age of 16. However, since the Ryuuo title match, Yaichi has been experiencing a string of defeats and losses with an established win rate of 30%. Not helping his reputation is that his one victory against his former master ended with the latter having a complete Potty Failure that he and fellow apprentice Ginko Sora had to clean up after.

Now in a tight spot, Yaichi returns to his apartment one day and finds a 9-year old girl inside, Ai Hinatsuru, who claims to want to be his apprentice. Now with the responsibility of taking an apprentice, can Yaichi regain his status as the strongest? Or will his reputation further plummet for completely different reasons?


The Ryuo's Work is Never Done! (Ryuo no Oshigoto!) is a series of Light Novels written by Shirow Shiratori and illustrated by Shirabii, which began in 2015. The series can be read in english in an E-Book format in Bookwalker.

The series also has a manga adaptation which ran from 2015 to 2019 in Young Gangan, and it received an anime adaptation with 12 episodes that premiered in January 8, 2018 by Project No. 9. The anime can be viewed on Crunchyroll here.


The Ryuo's Work is Never Done provides examples of:

  • Adapted Out: Several subplots didn't make it into the anime, notably Yaichi's appreciation match against Kousuke Kiyotaki and the aftermath, Asuka Oishi's struggle to be a Women's League player and her duel against Ai Hinatsuru as well as Machi Kugui and Ryou Tsukiyomizaka's Review Sessions at the end of each volume.
  • Badass Adorable: Both Ai Hinatsuru and Ai Yashajin are in Grade School, yet are skilled and talented enough to contend with more seasoned Shogi players.
  • Chick Magnet: Yaichi is very popular among the female cast. Very young girls in particular have taken a shine to him, which causes some problems.
  • A Day in the Limelight: The later volumes begin to take the focus away from Yaichi Kuzuryu and Ai Hinatsuru in favor of developing the Shogi World around them.
    • Volume 7 covers Yaichi's master Kousuke Kiyotaki's struggle to maintain his status in A-1 and re-evaluate his motivation for playing shogi in the light of his declining skill and passion for the game.
    • Volume 8 covers Those Two Girls Machi Kugui and Ryou Tsukiyomizaka's Title Match for the "Yamashiro Ouka" title that Kugui currently holds while exploring their relationship with Yaichi in greater detail.
    • Volume 9 covers Ai Yashajin's Title Match against Ginko Sora for the "Queen" title she holds following the MyNavi Tournament while focusing on her inner turmoil on clinging to shogi for her parent's memory and her struggle to completely move on in her life.
    • Volume 10 and 13 focus on the GS Group, primarily Mio's participation in the King of Naniwa tournament after the revelation that Mio is transferring to China because of her dad's job. Ai Hinatsuru has her own battle to face in order to participate in the Title Match against Rina Shakandou for the "Women's Legend" Title. Volume 13 has the group spend a lot of time with Mio before she boards the plane going to China.
    • Volumes 11-12 covers Ginko Sora's past with Yaichi and her motivation to become a professional shogi player after a bad losing streak in the 3-Dan division caused her to nearly off herself and the subsequent journey to find herself.
  • Forgotten First Meeting: Yaichi first meets Ai Hinatsuru in the Ryuo Title Match where Yaichi promises to grant whatever wish Ai desired if he gets the Ryuo title. Ai acts on that promise 3 months later while Yaichi completely forgot about it.
  • Official Couple: Yaichi ends up with his 2 year younger elder sister apprentice and Childhood Friend Ginko Sora.
  • Overshadowed by Awesome: Happens very frequently with female Shogi players whenever Ginko Sora is around. Ginko herself is overshadowed by all the male shogi players and "Shogi Martians" like Yaichi.
  • Precocious Crush: Both Ai's and the members of the Grade School Training Group have a deep crush on Yaichi.
  • Red Baron: Many of the more skilled Shogi Players have titles and even nicknames to identify themselves easily.
  • Two Girls and a Guy: Yaichi Kuzuryu shares this dynamic with Machi Kugui and Ryou Tsukiyomizaka during the Review Sessions at the end of every volume.