Dark Enough to See the Stars tells the fictional account of twelve-year-old Moses, who runs away on the Underground Railroad. Bloodhounds chase him as he follows the North Star to Pennsylvania. Before his mother was sold to a plantation in the Deep South, she had taught him to find the star. She had told him, “Never forget, Mose, you is named after Moses in the Bible. Someday you is goin’ to the Promised Land, just like he did.” Fueled by his mother’s hopes for his freedom, Moses is determined to reach Canada.
In Harrisburg, Pennsylvania he finds refuge with the Palmers, who also harbor a runaway teenage girl, Tillie. They do chores for the Palmers, and Mrs. Palmer gives them reading lessons. However, their freedom ends when the Fugitive Slave Law is passed, making it illegal to harbor slaves in the North. Offenders must pay a thousand dollar fine and serve six months in jail. Thus, the Palmers must help Moses and Tillie escape to Canada.
The Palmers arrange safe passage for Moses and Tillie to the next Underground Railroad station, but their plans are thwarted when the sheriff arrives at their home after dark, demanding the runaways. Will they ever reach Canada?