The Mad Scientists' Club
by Bertrand R. Brinley
Illustrated by Charles Geer


The Mad Scientists' Club is an Explorer Scout organization, something that is mentioned occasionally in passing, but generally does not drive the stories.

The Mad Scientists began as a series of short stories in Boys' Life magazine. They were later collected into two volumes, The Mad Scientists' Club and The New Adventures of the Mad Scientists' Club, originally published by the MacRae Smith Company of Philadelphia. Only about 1000 copies of the third novel, The Big Kerplop!, were published in 1974 before MacRae Smith went bankrupt, so it is not well known. Later publications in 1965 included Scholastic Book Services in paperback out of New York, London, and Richmond Hill, Ontario.

Sheridan Brinley, the son of the author, authorized Purple House Press to reprint these books starting in 2001. The new edition of The Big Kerplop! was released in 2003 (with the exclamation point included), which includes all new interior illustrations by Geer. The earlier MacRae Smith version is the only Mad Scientists' Club title without interior drawings, since Macrae Smith never commissioned them. On November 17, 2005, Purple House Press released the final book, the previously unpublished second novel titled The Big Chunk of Ice, which was newly illustrated by Geer.

A two-part episode in 1971 of the television series Wonderful World of Disney was loosely based on "The Strange Sea Monster of Strawberry Lake". It was titled "The Strange Monster of Strawberry Cove" and starred Burgess Meredith. It was repeated a few times, but doesn't seem to be available on DVD or videotape.

Bertrand R. Brinley was born June 19, 1917 in Hudson, New York and died on October 20, 1994 in Luray, Virginia. Much of the character of Mammoth Falls, the fictional town where the Mad Scientists' adventures take place, was based on the town of West Newbury, Massachusetts, where Brinley lived during part of his youth and where he graduated from high school in 1935. West Newbury contributed a good many place names and several of the characters to the Mad Scientists' Club stories.

    Living in the fictional small town of Mammoth Falls, the members of the Mad Scientists' Club are:
  • Jeff Crocker - President
  • Henry Mulligan - Vice President and Chief of Research
  • Dinky Poore
  • Freddy Muldoon
  • Homer Snodgrass
  • Mortimer Dalrymple
  • Charlie Finckledinck - the narrator of the stories
The Mad Scientists' Club 1965 - For Sale
    Consisting of:
  • "The Strange Sea Monster of Strawberry Lake", first published in Boys' Life (Sept. 1961) with illustrations by Harold Eldridge
  • "The Big Egg" (1964)
  • "The Secret of the Old Cannon", first published in Boy's Life (Jan. 1966), with illustrations by Marvin Friedman
  • "The Unidentified Flying Man of Mammoth Falls", first published in Boys' Life (Nov. 1962), with illustrations by Harold Eldridge
  • "The Great Gas Bag Race", first published in Boys' Life (March 1966), with illustrations by Bernard Fuchs
  • "The Voice in the Chimney" (1964)
  • "Night Rescue", first published in Boys' Life (Feb. 1964), with illustrations by David Stone
The boys are back in a 50th Anniversary Edition, with a new introduction by Sheridan Brinley. A strange sea monster appears on the lake...a fortune is unearthed from an old cannon ...a valuable dinosaur egg is stolen. Watch out as the Mad Scientists turn Mammoth Falls upside down! Take seven, lively, "normal" boys -- one an inventive genius -- give them a clubhouse for cooking up ideas, an electronics lab above the town hardware store, and a good supply of Army surplus equipment, and you, dear reader, have a boyhood dream come true and a situation that bears watching. In the hands of an author whose own work involved technological pioneering, the proceedings are well worth undivided attention, as the boys explore every conceivable possibility for high and happy adventure in the neighborhood of Mammoth Falls. To the unutterable confusion of the local dignitaries -- and the unalloyed delight of Bertrand Brinley's fans -- the young heroes not only outwit their insidious rival, Harmon Muldoon, but emerge as town heroes. Here, captured under one cover, are the fun-filled escapades of the young scientists whose exciting capers debuted in Boys' Life fifty years ago. Get the whole set of all four Mad Scientists books in hardcover, or one lar
 
The New Adventures of the Mad Scientists' Club 1968 - For Sale
    Consisting of:
  • "Big Chief Rainmaker" (1965)
  • "The Telltale Transmitter" (1966)
  • "The Cool Cavern" (1966)
  • "The Flying Sorcerer" (1968)
  • "The Great Confrontation" (1968)
A secret cavern becomes the perfect spot to restore a midget submarine, bank robbers must be apprehended, a flying sorcerer looms over Mammoth Falls and that's just the beginning of five more mad, mad MAD adventures.

The Big Kerplop! 1974 - For Sale
The whine of jet engines thunders from above as the giant Air Force bomber makes its approach to Westport Field. Suddenly, the citizens of Mammoth Falls are startled to see the bomb bay doors open and an object drop down, down, directly into Strawberry lake. Splash!
And what is that object? Why a bomb, what else? Not just a common, ordinary, conventional bomb, but an atomic bomb! But that's just the beginning of the latest (actually the first) madcap adventure - book-length this time - of that outrageous, notorious threat to municipal sanity known as The Mad Scientists' Club. As you know, with these boys anything can happen, and it does!

The Big Chunk of Ice 2005 - For Sale
It wasn't the diamond as big as the Ritz but it was a pretty big chunk of ice and it got the precocious pranksters of The Mad Scientists Club entwined in an international intrigue that only the intrepid investigators of Interpol could unravel. Take the seven young mad scientists of Mammoth Falls, stick them in an antiquated blimp bound for the Austrian Alps, along with two hep young college girls and a zany professor of mysterious Rumanian origins, and you have the makings of a high-flying fun fest that could only come from the author of The Mad Scientists Club and The Big Kerplop! If you're not already a fan of superbrain Henry Mulligan, dinky Dinky Poore, fat Freddy Muldoon, and the other unpredictable troublemakers that populate this series of mad, mad adventure stories, you will be, once you read the Big Chunk of Ice

The Mad Scientists' Club Complete Collection 2010 - For Sale
The gang's all here, as are the stories, all 14 of them. Yep, that's right. All 12 individual tales and the two novels combined into one book. The book is big enough that your friends will notice it and ask you what's in it. You can proudly tell them that you have the complete Mad Scientists' Club works in your hands and can find anything they might want to know about the gang.
Even better, you can carry this around wherever you go and have every story right at your fingertips. And, like all paperbacks, after a while it will become dog-eared from constant use as you read and re-read the exploits of the seven junior geniuses of Mammoth Falls.
Written between 1961 and 1986, here is the Complete Collection of Bertrand R. Brinley's Mad Scientists' Club stories from The Mad Scientists' Club, The New Adventures of the Mad Scientists' Club, The Big Kerplop! and The Big Chunk of Ice. All complete with illustrations by Charles Geer.