Goodreads helps you keep track of books you want to read.
Start by marking “The Transall Saga” as Want to Read:
The Transall Saga
Enlarge cover
Rate this book
Clear rating

The Transall Saga

4.16 of 5 stars 4.16  ·  rating details  ·  2,799 ratings  ·  239 reviews
Mark's solo camping trip in the desert turns into a terrifying and thrilling odyssey when a mysterious beam of light transports him to another time on what appears to be another planet. As Mark searches for a pathway back to his own time on Earth, he must make a new life in a new world. His encounters with primitive tribes bring the joy of human bonds, but violence and war ...more
Paperback, 256 pages
Published October 12th 1999 by Laurel Leaf (first published May 11th 1998)
more details... edit details

Friend Reviews

To see what your friends thought of this book, please sign up.
Hatchet by Gary PaulsenMy Side of the Mountain by Jean Craighead GeorgeThe Transall Saga by Gary PaulsenLord of the Flies by William GoldingThe River by Gary Paulsen
Best Wilderness Survival Books
3rd out of 70 books — 47 voters
The Hunger Games by Suzanne CollinsHatchet by Gary PaulsenCatching Fire by Suzanne CollinsLord of the Flies by William GoldingNight by Elie Wiesel
Best Survival Stories
207th out of 661 books — 1,142 voters

More lists with this book...

Community Reviews

(showing 1-30 of 3,000)
filter  |  sort: default (?)  |  rating details
Jun 04, 2008 Andrew rated it 5 of 5 stars
Recommends it for: everyone
Recommended to Andrew by: Just saw it on a shelf
Shelves: gary-paulsen
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Jun 25, 2008 Kim rated it 4 of 5 stars
Recommended to Kim by: 12 year old son
Shelves: youngreader, fantasy
I was pretty impressed by this book. Considering that there were little to no books like this when I was young, my son has a wealth of books from which to choose. When I compare what was available to me 35-40 years ago to this book, I can't help but be impressed. Yes, the story can be a bit contrived at times, but it keeps you on your toes and keeps you wanting to know what happened. For a young-reader book, this one really delivers.
I really enjoyed this book -- but then, I've really enjoyed all the books by Gary Paulsen that I've read, be it as a kid/teenager or adult. It was quick and easy, but interesting and not completely predictable. I do agree with some of the other reviewers that it can be a bit contrived at times -- but another way of looking at it is that Mark just had an insane amount of good luck over all (kind of like Brian in Hatchet, when you think about it, actually). Even when Mark got hurt, luck was still ...more
Frankie Navarro
may contain spoilers viewers descrition is advised ;) Transal saga The story begins with Mark Harrison a 13 year old kid, when he is hiking through the mountainous Magruder Missile Range ( a militarized zone) when he is struck by a mysterious blue beam of light. He wakes up in a strange world that he believes is an alien world :0 with things that are likeEarth. He uses his survival skills to live on this mysterious place and, while exploring the forest he discovers a camp with a group of human l ...more
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
I really didn't think I was going to like this book but I was outrageously surprised. The ending to this story was so beautiful. In the hope the end gives, it's also quite sad. I don't want to give anything away, but if you even remotely like science fiction you should read it. The sci-fi aspect is very watered down. It's more of a survival story with a dash of science fiction and a small portion of romance.

The more I reflect on it, the more I just loved this story. Despite having read it 10+ y
I Liked this book. I really did. The concept was intriguing, the writing wasn't bad, the characters were fairly realistic.

But there were these little thing that ticked me off.

1) Mark's use of expression. In this book, we meet people who speak a language other than English. And Mark learns this language, but he likes to use English expressions of speech. For instance: MArk is training with one these people, named Sarbo. Sarbo tells him to come back first thing tommorow morning. Mark says "Wild h
Jessica Harmon
There's this subreddit "tip of my tongue", where people post half remembered book, songs, movies, whatever, and the rest of the internet chips in and remembers the book for you. It's amazing. I don't know why, but this book, the Transall Saga, shows up on there more often than any other book. My brother has had this book, and most Gary Paulsen books, for years, but I never read any of them but Hatchet. But since I kept seeing it online, I decided to see what all the fuss was about.

This book, fo
Sparker 87
This book was an amazing book. it had great detail and really exciting.i finished the day i started reading it. i love all books and you can send me some books you think are good at put you e-mail addres and ill try to find it and read it and ill see if i like it
Three 1/2 stars? Starts out a sci-fi version of Hatchet, but turns out to be richer than that. Some boys will become more avid readers because of this - belongs in every Middle School library.
In the book The Transall Saga by Gary Paulsen, there is a young boy named Mark who loves to go hiking and camping by himself in the desert. But one day when he was camping, Mark found a mysterious blue light, and when he reached out to touch it, he was transported to another time. Mark has to learn to adapt and evolve in the new time, he has to learn to survive in this strange new place. I thought this book was an amazing book. I rate it ten out of five stars because it was just so good. I recom ...more
My 10 year old loves this book and pressured me into reading it :) I almost couldn't get through it. I actually like a lot of YF and YA books but this one could not hook me. I kept feeling like it was a rough draft: the characters were flat, the plot segmented, the dialogue unrealistic, and the ending not simply unresolved but as if the English class bell rang and so the essay was rushed to at least end with a complete sentence. The narrator's voice on the audio book did not seem to be a good fi ...more
Jan 21, 2009 Gunne rated it 4 of 5 stars
Recommends it for: people who like adventure and time travel stories.
I first read this book under the name Blue Light, and hell, it was a long read, back then when people like me weren't accustomed to inch-thick books like Harry Potter. I was about 15 I think, and having been brought up on thin books and short stories, didn't quite have the attention span of completing the book without breaks. But you know something is good when you keep coming back for more. I took breaks, and really, I think breaks are one of the better judges to whether a book is addictive eno ...more
In some ways, Gary Paulsen has gone an entirely new route in this book. The Transall Saga takes place mostly in a sort of futuristic society, though one that differs greatly from the cultures found in most science fiction tomes. This land (called "Transall") to which Mark has been unexpectedly transported is far inferior to our modern world in terms of technology and personal development, placing more emphasis on war and looting than on nobility of character.

Mark, age thirteen, has suddenly le
Paulsen should write more dystopians. He's good at them. Even though they're geared towards a younger market, I do think his books appeal to all ages.

The Transall Saga finds Mark, a teenager on his first camping trip by himself. He's not out long when a brilliant tube of light transports him to what he thinks is another world. Here things are just off, animals are different, vegetation is different, and the people while similar, aren't like they were where he came from. But after facing numerous
One of my favorite writers from my Childhood is Gary Paulsen. Brian's Saga brought us into a unique world of Survival. His Adventure's series captivated readers with vivid mysteries and adventures. The hijinx of Dunc and Amos always brought a smile to my face. Of all of Paulsen's work, though The White Fox Chronicles were my favorite. This is a book that I still pull off of my shelf at least once a year to give a read. I feel a bit blasphemous saying this, but I think I enjoyed the Transall Saga ...more

Mark has always loved hiking and backpacking - in theory. He's read all the magazines, but he's never been on a real trip, until the day his parents allow him to hike across a missile range. It should have only been a brief hike, but then a mysterious light appears, and Mark wakes up in a bizarre world, where the plants are red, the sky is yellow, and nothing is familiar. Mark has to figure out how to survive, which is simple, if not easy, until the day that he finds the arrow-people
This book is about a kid named Mark Harrison who is my age (thirteen) and goes on a solo camping trip in the desert. His mom is extremely worried about this camp and threatened to call the national guard if he was a day late home. Mark was very experienced in wilderness survival and was confident. Although, neither of these things would have helped him in the situation he was in. He was transported to what seems to be another planet! Mark comes across many different tribes and experiences war an ...more
Jennifer Marie
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Andrew B
The story begins with Mark Harrison, a 13-year old survival enthusiast, hiking through the mountainous Magruder Missile Range when he is struck by a mysterious blue beam of light. He wakes up in a strange world that he believes is an alien world with many similarities to earth. He uses his survival skills to live off the land and, while exploring the forest, he discovers a camp of some short human like creatures with webbed feet and dark, olive-colored skin, though he finds them too weird to int ...more
Matt W
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Michelle Crim
This book was amazing! I love it. The best science fiction book I've ever read in my entire life! Anyone who sees this review should read this book. We read it as a group in school, and everyone in the group loved it. If you like survival and sci-fi, then this is your book. I highly recommend reading this. This book makes you think about certain things, and what it would be like in a different world. The main character Mark A.K.A Kakon turns from not even knowing a single language to being a wel ...more
Brody Kuhar
In this book Gary Paulsen grabs your attention. It's about a boy named Mark that is in the desert on a camping trip that has worried his mom sick. She even told him that if he was a day late coming back she would call the national guard. On this camping trip he finds a mysterious blue light called the Transall that he decides to walk into. He is taken into what seems like a different world. Everything is different there from the way the people look to the grass color. He can't find the light bac ...more
i read this way back in elementary school (I think this was published in 1999) after picking it out from a bookshelf in my classroom. flash forward more than a decade later: The book has long been forgotten. I am washing dishes past midnight when something flickers in my brain. A book cover with a beam of light. A kid who has to survive on another planet. Or was it earth all along? I think I remember him finding a coke bottle but maybe I'm confusing this with Planet of the Apes or something. The ...more
Catherine Greenfeder
Gary Paulsen writes a compellling adventure novel, and this one takes place in an alternate world akin to the Earth. When 13 year old Mark Harrison begins his solo backpacking trip into the desert, he comes across a tube of light. Curious, he explores, gets caught by this time warp and pushed into the future, into a primeval environment where he must use his wits, hone his skills at survival, and learn to become a hunter and warrior. His quest is to find the light which will transport him back h ...more
Kat Garino
This was the first dystopia type novel I read as a child and I found myself mesmerized by this different world in front of me. To this day, I remember that feeling deep in my chest when the plot twist finally comes out. Simply amazing, as a child I never saw it coming.
This book lets you follow Mark on his journey to fight for his survival in a strange, new world. You will find yourself captivated by his story and eager to understand this world and its people.
I still have my copy of this book f
Douglas Larson
I have not read many of Paulsen's books and even though I believe he is a bit of an eclectic writer, this story seems to be a departure from his usual fare. I have read his Hatchet series of books and this has some similarities in that it deals with protagonist, Mark's, ability to survive in the wilderness. While hiking in the wilderness he is transported to another time/dimension where the people are little more than savages surviving in a world full of other savage creatures, some human, some ...more
Emily introduced me to this book by rating it 5 star - that is her scale which seems to lack lower numbers. On my scale this is a GOOD BOOK. It is about a boy zapped into a different world by a mysterious blue beam of light. He has the usual adventures, meeting different peoples, falling in love, etc. Eventually by way of a coca cola shard he learns that he is indeed in a time far into earth's future after a strange highly contagious form of the Ebola virus wiped out most of the human race. Read ...more
Nicole Neff
I loved this book in elementary school a LOT! and then I decided to read it again. I was amazed at how much I had forgotten and then when as I was reading it, I remembered bits and pieces. Now, it actually means a little more than it did then because of the context of the story. If you are a dystopian person, you might really like this book! That seems to be the genre these days. :)
« previous 1 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 99 100 next »
  • Thuggin In Miami (The Family Is Made : Part 1)
  • Jason's Gold
  • Below the Root (Green Sky, #1)
  • The Hork Bajir Chronicles (Animorphs Chronicles, #2)
  • Disappearances
  • The Girl Who Owned a City
  • Firestorm (Caretaker, #1)
  • Worf's First Adventure
  • On the Far Side of the Mountain (Mountain, #2)
  • The Philadelphia Adventure (Vesper Holly #5)
  • Falling Hard: 100 Love Poems by Teenagers
  • Welcome to the Ark (Ark, #1)
  • The Violet Keystone (The Seventh Tower, #6)
  • Colors in the Dreamweaver's Loom
  • I Want to Go Home!
  • Simon Bloom: The Octopus Effect (Simon Bloom, #2)
  • River Rats
  • Book of Names (Diadem, Worlds of Magic, #1)
Although he was never a dedicated student, Paulsen developed a passion for reading at an early age. After a librarian gave him a book to read--along with his own library card--he was hooked. He began spending hours alone in the basement of his apartment building, reading one book after another.

Running away from home at the age of 14 and traveling with a carnival, Paulsen acquired a taste for adve
More about Gary Paulsen...
Hatchet (Brian's Saga, #1) Brian's Winter (Brian's Saga, #3) The River (Brian's Saga, #2) Brian's Return (Brian's Saga, #4) Brian's Hunt (Brian's Saga, #5)

Share This Book