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Sweet Justice by Neil Gaiman, Alan Grant and others #BookReview

Featuring stories by New York Times best sellers Neil Gaiman and Dan Abnett, along with hit comics authors Mark Millar, Peter Milligan, Alan Grant and more, this amazing collection brings together nine thrilling and unusual short prose stories from the 2000 AD and Judge Dredd Annuals and Specials. Never seen outside of those pages until now, this ebook presents these hard-to-find tales in one collection. 

Sweet Justice by Neil Gaiman, Alan Grant and others book cover

Title: Sweet Justice | Authors: Neil Gaiman, Alan Grant, Peter Milligan, Dan Abnett, Mark Millar | Publisher: Rebellion | Pub. Date: 20th November 2011 | Pages: 87 | ISBN: 9781849973212 | Genre: Science Fiction | Language: English | Starred Review: No | Source: Library

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Sweet Justice Review

‘Sweet Justice’ is an interesting but not entirely successful read. What makes it fun is that it features prose short stories set in the ‘Judge Dredd’ universe. For anyone who doesn’t know, Dredd is a long-running British comic book character. A brutal lawman who patrols the violent streets of the sprawling future metropolis Mega City One. What makes it less fun is that the quality of the stories is mixed to say the least. Rather than being new tales, the contents of this slim volume were all taken from the pages of various ‘2000 AD’ and ‘Judge Dredd’ annuals from the 1980s and 1990s. (Explainer: in the UK comic books tend to publish an annual each winter – a hardback collection of new strips and other materials featuring popular characters from the comic). 

This collection features stories by writers whose names will be familiar to Dredd fans (Alan Grant, Peter Milligan), one from Mark Millar (‘Kick Ass’) and one from Neil Gaiman. They focus on characters other than Dredd (who appears as a bit player, if at all), with stories devoted to Psi Judge Anderson, Judge Hershey and to citizens of Mega City One.

It was the last of these that I enjoyed the most. Alan Grant turns in two very funny shorts written from the perspective of down on their luck inhabitants of the metropolis. They’re amusing, clever and provide an interestingly different perspective on things. Most importantly, they make sense as prose rather than comic strips. The same isn’t true for the others stories, even the best of them. Gaiman’s creepy and occasionally very funny ‘Judge Hershey: Sweet Justice’ has some great ideas, but would have been better in comic form. 

Just as I did when I read stories like this as a kid, I couldn’t help feeling that the main purpose of these stories was to fill a few pages in the annual without the additional expense of having to pay for the artwork as well as the words. It’s certainly interesting to see writers playing around with a different form, but my advice for Dredd fans would be to stick to comics. 

You can find this book at many retailers via clicking on the appropriate link on Goodreads (Buying direct from retailers is a good way to support indie authors); however, in the spirit of supporting literacy programs, we would like to point out that you may be able to purchase this book through BetterWorldBooks.

Published inScience Fiction Book ReviewsUnstarred Reviews

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