One day, in a blinding flash, every human is petrified and turned into a statue. Civilization gradually falls apart. When high school student, Taiju, reawakens, bursting from his stone shell, he is shocked to discover that it is 3700 years later! And he is not alone, as his classmate, Senku, has been up and running for over half a year. Now, the duo and more reawakened humans must kick-start civilization, which will not be easy, as not everyone agrees on how civilization should be rebuilt.
As Dr. Stone, Vol. 4 (Senku's Lab; Chapters 26 to 34) opens, Senku continues to create his “kingdom of science,” in the remote village he discovered after following the beautiful “gorilla girl,” Kohaku. The village may have a traitor in the form of the sneaky Gen Asagiri, who could be spying on the village for Tsukasa, the former high school muscleman who wants to kill Senku.
Meanwhile, Senku continues to work on developing medicine to cure Ruri, the village shamaness and Kohaku's sister. However, Senku and friends will have to fight (1) the invisible danger of sulfuric acid and (2) Magma who wants to marry Ruri so that he can become chief of the village.
THE LOWDOWN: I have described the Dr. Stone manga as an odd shonen manga, one that constantly expands its scope. In fact, the last two volumes have found Taiju and Senku separated, as the latter has a new home for now.
Dr. Stone Graphic Novel Volume 4 maintains the focus on Senku. His pursuit of the building blocks and ingredients of the medicine to save the ill and dying Ruri are a delight. I say “way to go!” on introducing some science into the narrative. Senku's quest and the village's impending fighter tournament to decide Ruri's husband read like something from a potboiler novel, thanks to translator, Caleb Cook's work. The ending will assure that readers return for the next volume. If you are not reading Dr. Stone, it is time to start.
I READS YOU RECOMMENDS: Readers looking for odd shonen manga will want to try the Shonen Jump title, Dr. Stone.