The Shun santoku is a remarkably versatile knife that almost eliminates the need for a heavier chef's knife. The edge is razor sharp, as one would expect from a Japanese knife and the handle ideal for smaller hands. If you're used to German knives the smaller bolster may take a while to get used to, but I think it actually forces you to hold the knife properly. I have a three year old Shun chef's knife that has been consistently honed and is finally in need of professional sharpening, so I anticipate the santoku will be similarly durable.
Remember that it pays to get Japanese knives sharpened by someone who really knows what they're doing because of the possibility of damaging the blade angle. I sharpen my own German knives with a wet stone, but would never do the same to the Shuns.
Overall: highly recommended for almost any cutting job, especially if you have smaller hands.
I recommend this product.