The story takes place in a large, magically created circle with doors surrounding the outside that only magicians and illusionists can enter. One half the circle is decorated in the color gold for the illusionists, the second half in purple for the magicians. The ceiling is lit with floating candles, the floor is filled with tables and performing stages were those with magic or skills in illusion can perform and sell their wares.
Toby is a lonely twelve-year-old boy. He lost his parents years ago. Toby lives with his grandfather, who homeschools him and doesn't allow him to have any friends. His life is very dull and mundane until one day, he sees hundreds of people in black clothing and tophats lined up in the street in front of his house, waiting to go into a little cottage across the street. The problem is no one else can see them.
Toby's grandfather goes missing and leaves a note telling him to find Thatch and Wesa. The problem is he doesn't know who Thatch and Wesa are. Strange things begin to happen, and Toby needs answers. All he can think of is to follow the line of strangely dressed people and hope he can find his grandfather.
The world of the magician convention is exciting and fun. The story is fast-paced.