Title: The Glass Scientists
Creators: S.H. Cotugno
Review copy: Publisher
Availability: Available now!
Summary: The gothic worlds of Dr. Jekyll & Mr. Hyde, Frankenstein, and more collide in this graphic novel series about buried secrets, mad science, and misunderstood monsters. For fans of stylish reimaginings like Lore Olympus and gaslamp fantasies like The Night Circus !
London isn’t the safest place for mad scientists these days. After that whole ordeal with Frankenstein, angry mobs have gotten awfully good at hunting down monsters and wiping out anything they don’t understand. In fact, if it weren’t for one extraordinary young man, every out-of-the-box thinker would have been locked up . . . or worse. That young man is none other than Dr. Henry Jekyll. He believes mad scientists would thrive if they could just fix their public image, which is why he founded the Society for Arcane Sciences, a place where like-minded eccentrics could come together to defy the laws of nature in peace.
But everything changes when a mysterious stranger arrives, bent on taking the Society in a radical new direction. With everyone turning against him, Jekyll’s life starts to spiral out of control, shattering all his carefully laid plans and threatening to expose his darkest secret—one that could destroy everything he has built from the inside out.
Review: I can’t get over what an exciting time in graphic novels it is right now, especially in the YA and Middle Grade space. There is just so much out there — from queer romcoms to thrilling adventures to well, graphic novels like The Glass Scientists. Creator S.H. Cotugno is someone I already follow online, since S.H. has worked on cartoons like Gravity Falls and The Owl House. Not to mention the graphic novel has garnered praise from creatores like ND Stevenson and Molly Knox Ostertag.
It’s gothic, it’s spooky, it’s funny, and it’s heartwarming — and I was along for the ride. The Glass Scientists follows one Dr. Henry Jekyll, the founder of the Society for Arcane Sciences — where quirky scientists (deemed “mad scientists” by society) go to follow their passions and find a home with other like-minded innovators. Outside the Society for Arcane Sciences lies the city of London, a place that is none too friendly (read: lots of angry mobs) when it comes to these scientific endeavors.
This is a story that mixes werewolves in with Frankenstein and the story of Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde — a delightful gtohic mishmash set in London. The illustrations are evocative and perfectly suited to the tone of the story, which veers between heartwrenching to laugh-out-loud hilarious. There are plenty of characters to root for, from side characters to the hero, who is in a battle with himself.
The Glass Scientists collects the first 7 chapters of its webcomic iteration — that means that the graphic novel does end on a note that leaves you looking for the next installment. I’ll definitely be checking out the webcomic to keep reading. If you’re interested in a fun, gothic read, perfect for spooky season, this is it. Check it out!
Recommendation: Get it soon!