Melanie Tamaki is an outsider. The only child of a loving but neglectful mother is just barely coping with school and with life. But everything changes on the day she returns home to find her mother is missing, lured back to Half World by the vindictive Mr. Glueskin. Soon Melanie begins an epic and darkly fantastical journey to save her parents. What she does not yet realize is that the future of the universe depends upon her success.