by Hari Tokeino
Published in the U.S. by Tokyopop
Slugline: After Grandma dies, Sakura comes home to find she has an assortment of stereotypical half-brothers.
This is almost exactly the same setup as Crossroad, but in a more typical, sitcom-ish vein. Nobody bothered to tell Sakura that her father had four sons by a previous wife, and so when Grandma dies (yes, her parents are dead too -- it's a deadly job, in Japan) it's a big surprise when they turn up instead of Child Protective Services (does Japan even have a CPS?)
Much is made of the fact that Sakura is not even her father's daughter, though I'm not clear on why that matters when you're building a family from scratch anyways. Sakura doesn't remember the brief time they all lived together when she was a baby, so it's a houseful of strangers and all the awkwardness that comes with.
The flashbacks are sweet without being too syrupy. However, the boys fall neatly into stereotype -- the angry one, the cross-dressing housekeeper, the responsible one, and the shy one -- and Sakura herself is a typical manga girl. So this is a competent, but not exceptional, first volume.
(Note that only in manga would "cross-dressing houskeeper" be a stereotype. Oh, how jaded I've become...)
Me and My Brothers, vol. 1 is also available from Right Stuf, Intl., an online retailer specializing in anime and manga.