And Lightning Struck: Mary Shelley and the Curse of Creation by Robert Weibezahl is an atmospheric historical drama that delves into the intimate life of Mary Shelley, the writer of Frankenstein. It is a story about Mary herself—not an adaptation of
Frankenstein, but rather the story of how this literary genius came to write it. Mary Godwin Shelley was only eighteen years old when she “gave birth” to her classic story and the Creature at the heart of it. Along with her husband, the poet Percy Bysshe Shelley, and their friends, including Lord Byron, Mary was part of a group of freethinkers who lived life by their own rules, often provoking scandal. The Creature himself gives voice to Mary’s beliefs about creation, humanity, and art as he descends into the vengeful madness of the novel’s plot. At the play’s end Mary rejects the past—or does she?