Alvie Brechenmacher has arrived in London to begin her training in Polymaking -- the magical discipline of bespelling plastic. Polymaking is the newest form of magic, and in a field where there is so much left to learn, every Polymaker dreams of making the next big discovery. Even though she is only an apprentice, Alvie is an inventor at heart, and she is determined to make as many discoveries -- in as short a time frame -- as she can. Luckily for her, she's studying under the world-renowned magician Marion Praff, who is just as dedicated as Alvie is. Alvie's enthusiasm reinvigorates her mentor's work, and together they create a device that could forever change Polymaking -- and the world. But when a rival learns of their plans, he conspires to steal their invention and take the credit for it himself. To thwart him, Alvie will need to think one step ahead. For in the high-stakes world of magical discovery, not everyone plays fair.