Sweet Dreams is a new collection from the online gay anthology Young Bottoms in Love, and the second one from artist and writer Brett Hopkins. He's drawn four stories, written three, and added three pages of sketches.
The first two stories, written and drawn by Hopkins, "Moving Day I & II", feature the same main character, who in the first story is forced to move out when things go sour with his roomate, and then in the second decides to go out in a gay bar for the first time. Very realistic in theme and art style, these little tales are close in ambiance and theme to Hopkins' collaborations with Richard Ruane.
Ruane, who's already worked with Hopkins together on the first collection of his work, has written the third sequence, a sober story of a guy trying to have a good time with his friends after another guy broke up with him. Definitely not among the cute-and-happy stories of the anthology, its lack of melodrama and its attention to everyday life shows once more that Ruane has a knack for that kind of realistic stories, and that he's found a worthwhile collaborator in the artist.
As for the fourth story, I'll only say that it's a lyrical rite-of-passage fairytale which was my first writing for the anthology, and I'm extremely happy with Brett's work, who also seemed to enjoy himself.
The last story is the only one not drawn by Brett Hopkins, but by two artists named Nate and Mike K., from a script by Hopkins. A young man in a bar relates a dream he used to have when he was young, which helped him accept his being gay. With a delicate and very detailed art style, the dream sequences are among the most moving pages I've read in the anthology.
Self-discovery without pathos seems to be a comon thread to all those stories, and this comic will hopefully serve as an appetizer for readers of Brett Hopkins' work, who's hard at work with Richard Ruane on a graphic novel following the characters from their stories in Hopkins' first collection.