In a world inhabited by goblins and corrupt magicians, someone's gotta set it right! Unfortunately for Courtney Crumrin, she lives in a faerie-touched world in which that is often impossible, and most of her victories tend to be pyrrhic victories or tinged with tragedy.
Courtney moves in to her uncle's house -- a huge mansion in a town populated by wizards -- with her parents ,who seem to care more about social status than they do about their daughter. As she tries to navigate through middle school life by day, her nights are filled with magic lessons and difficult wisdom from her uncle, Aloysius Crumrin, and team-ups with the goblins waging wars in the town's backyard.
The Courtney Crumrin books are refreshing in their nuanced vision of the faerie world "next door" to this reality. The tales successfully replicate the older and darker forms of fairy tales -- in clear contrast to either the more familiar eucatastrophe of traditional 20th century fantasy or the shadenfreude of traditional 20th century horror. The faeries of her world are neither celestial nor demonic but simply irrevocably *other*.