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The Underground Moon by Melissa K. Magner

Summers in Tennessee are unfamiliar to fifteen-year-old Rosella Gill, who spent her life growing up in Oregon. But after a traumatic event with her mother that left their family in shambles, Rosella doesn’t plan on seeing her old home again any time soon. Together with her mother and seven-year-old sister Hettie, Rosella finds herself ripped from her old life as they move in with her aunt. Though she doesn’t mind Tennessee, the town they live in is rural and stagnant. Things get surprisingly more interesting, however, when she and Hettie come across a well hidden in a nearby forest and a staircase that descends into it. Underneath, they find a moonlit lake and a forest with trees boasting intricate carvings of children’s faces. Above it all shines an underground moon, which grows a little fuller every time they return. After meeting a man with a haunted past, Rosella begins to realize that the world is not as innocent as it seems, and it has a particular target: her sister.

Release year: 2020

Genres: Teen/Young Adult (13-18+), dark/urban fantasy, horror

Content Warning: Suicide, suicide attempt, mental illness, grief, neglect, alcoholism, grooming, gore, blood, death of a parent, cursing

Praise for The Underground Moon

"The Underground Moon is a triumph in dark, thrilling fantasy, and a must-read whether you're a YA reader or not." 
-Readers' Favorite, K.C. Finn
"...reminiscent of classic Stephen King...While true YA, the book will appeal to a wide array of prospective audience members."
-BookLife by Publishers Weekly
"A chilling account of the difficulties of living and the strength of the human spirit. A modern fairy tale with hope being the winner."
-David Cameron, Author of A Trembling of Finches
Image by Click and Learn Photography

The Underground Moon: Art

Cover design: Bespoke Book Covers, Illustrations: Viktoriia Davydova (4 out of 1o)

Moon hourglass art.png

Listen to music that inspired the story
or read the guide to learn about each song


  1. Quarantine: A haunting, ethereal theme song.

  2. Crater: Divine with a hint of something darker.

  3. Pan's Labyrinth Lullaby: A sad, whimsical lullaby.

  4. Moon: Otherworldly and mysterious.

  5. The Landing: Poison. {Ch. 30}

  6. Sextant: The real moon. {Ch. 32}

  7. I'll Take Care of You: Rosella's song.

  8. The Sky: Ava's song.

  9. Spider's Web: Hettie's song.

  10. Miss Misery: Wayne's song. 

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