Yoichi was raised by his grandfather and grandmother, so while it was never explicitly confirmed to him, he thought that his parents must have died. It turned out that this was a false assumption and that his father was actually the head of a major corporation, but just recently had died due to an unfortunate accident. As a result, as Taishido Jinya’s only son, he is in line to receive half of a major inheritance. However, in addition to him, Jinya had 5 other illegitimate children, of which all of them are girls. Jinya’s will specifies that only one of them is to be acknowledged and given the other half, and that Yoichi is the one that must choose which of them, with the rest losing any support from the Taishido family and being scattered to the winds. Under such circumstances, Yoichi and his 5 sisters moves to a new apartment arranged by the caretaker of Jinya’s will, Shinonome Murasaki. There, due to a system that requires him to visit all of them, he begins learning about all of them. There’s Tamiya Selene, an incredibly lazy girl with most things that has a very strong interesting in creating clothes but has great difficulty going outside due to a mental block. There’s Himura Tomomi, a girl that loves games and has an overtly strong competitive streak, but also wants to do her best as the eldest daughter. There’s Mishima Sayuri, who is very good at preparing things and is even good at modifying her behavior to appeal to others with that preparation, but derails entirely when those preparations come undone. There’s Tachibana Yuuki, who due to various reasons has not just become guy like in her mannerisms and clothing, but has also become deathly afraid of girls in general, but despite that all still wants to do her best to become more feminine. And lastly there’s Ookuma Mika, a very young girl still in elementary school that behaves as such innocent children do. Yoichi gets to know and gets closer to the 5 girls, doing his best to guide them as their big brother, but that makes the impending deadline of having to choose only one of them to be acknowledged as his sister all the more difficult.
This novel series is focused around the relationships between a guy and five girls that he discovers are his half-sisters. There’s the issue of an overarching story revolving around an impending deadline, but that largely just serves as a forcing function that requires them to interact and the actual interactions and resulting relationships are what actually matter. The heroines are interesting with a diverse set of personalities that work well together. The structure of the series is that in the first two books, Yoichi helps the heroines with various problems they have and in doing so gets closer to them. There’s some strong moments and a good amount of character development here in the heroines and decent relationship development. While this occurs, Yoichi is a pretty blank character and mostly only serves as a vehicle to interact and show off the heroines really, as is often the case with works like this. However, the third book actually acknowledges this fact, that the protagonist is a blank character that doesn’t seem to have any personality of his own beyond interacting with the heroines, and the story flips around to the sisters actually pushing Yoichi to grow, all of which was told surprisingly well getting a lot more intense than I expected and ultimately having a pretty strong impact. There’s also an interesting concept where there’s a character that’s there but isn’t emphasized in the text properly due to Yoichi being the narrator and him brushing her off though it’s clear that she should be given a larger focus, that ends up gaining that larger focus at the end as a part of Yoichi’s growth. All of this combined with the actual overarching plot line regarding the deadlines which was just sort of there but felt like something that needed to be resolved eventually also having a pretty solid conclusion overall makes the ending pretty satisfying. Throughout all this, there’s a lot of just nice and light hearted moments with Yoichi and his sisters interacting and a decent amount of light comedy, that overall make this work feel like a pretty comfy read. The art is also generally quite nice.
A harem type work with solid heroines and a blank protagonist that surprisingly ends up serving as a decent deconstruction.