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The Transall Saga

4.19  ·  Rating details ·  4,129 ratings  ·  347 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)
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Jan 13, 2018 rated it really liked it
Shelves: fantasy
Read this book years ago when I was much younger and thoroughly enjoyed it. A good paced novel with a interesting premise. The twist near the end was very interesting
Jul 12, 2018 rated it really liked it
A YA book loaded with the adventures of young Mark who slips through a blue light beam into the land of Transall and the frightening future.
Reluctant readers pre-teen and up have been reading this Gary Paulsen Classic since 1999.
I read it with my 10 year old Grandson who is not a RR, but was enthralled .
5 stars for him+ 4 stars for Gma = 4.5 stars
Jun 25, 2008 rated it really liked it
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.
Jun 02, 2008 rated it it was amazing
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.
Shane M
Jan 14, 2016 rated it it was amazing
What if life as you know it just vanished in the blink of an eye? All of your friends and family just gone. This books genre is fiction.
I think this was a really good book because it talks about adjusting to life in another world and trying to survive with nothing.

The setting of my book is Earth in the beginning, and a different planet the rest of the book. This is very important to the story because it is all about Mark trying to survive in a place with jungles, people that look so, futuristi
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
Apr 09, 2014 rated it it was amazing
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 like Earth. 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 ...more
Kevin Gusdorf
May 01, 2015 rated it it was amazing
This book was one of the best books I have ever read. The plot was so interesting and cool. I loved the ending... And the way the author writes is just amazing. It was very fun to read and it just kept me engaged the whole time. I recommend this book for everyone!!
Michael M
May 01, 2015 rated it really liked it
I really did enjoy this book and I think people who really like adventures and something that is always happening in the book and nothing's boring. READ THIS BOOK!
Seth Warner
Apr 06, 2016 rated it really liked it
I remember loving this book in 7th grade. Probably worth a re-read.
Cougar Davis
Oct 06, 2017 rated it really liked it
Gary Paulsen's The Transall Saga is about a kid named Mark who is on a solo camping trip in the desert, when suddenly he is transported to a strange planet by a blue light. Mark must then defend him self from alien elements, and figure out the mystery of the strange primitive tribes that inhabit the world. When he discovers the village of the arrow people as Mark calls them, he is soon taken captive by a enemy tribe called the Tsook. He is taken as a slave and must work for the village's leader ...more
Robby R.
Oct 13, 2017 rated it it was amazing
The Transall Saga by Gary Paulsen has been the best book I’ve read in a long time. There were an abundance of exciting moments and action-packed moments that keep you on the edge of your seat the whole time and make you want to turn to the next page as quickly as possible.
The Transall Saga is a book broken up into three parts about a fifteen-year-old boy named Mark who seeks adventure and loves camping. One day, Mark was out hiking in a desert in Colorado- after convincing his parents - and spo
Karina Escajeda
Nov 26, 2017 rated it did not like it
So this is the one book of 22 that I didn't end up finishing for my adolescent literature class. I chose it because I wanted to get out of my comfort zone, and I did that with a few other authors. However, I'm still pretty comfortable on the 'dislike' side of the Paulsen fence. This is just SO predictible, and as a woman, I just cannot justify placing books in boys or girls hands that do not elevate women to interesting roles, as foils, protagonists, whatever. The whole 'white boy has adventure, ...more
May 01, 2014 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: favorites
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
Jun 14, 2010 rated it it was amazing
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Even though Gary Paulsen isn't known for his science fiction, this is definitely a master work of the genre. I think this is one of the earliest pieces of science fiction I read and it set the bar pretty high for everything else. The characters, the setting, the suspenseful plot, it all made this book impossible to put down. Strangely, looking back I think of this as similar to the first Marvel Thor movie in some respects. I know that's a strange parallel to draw, but I think, if you read this, ...more
Trent Zirker
May 01, 2015 rated it it was amazing
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Sparker 87
Apr 11, 2008 rated it it was amazing
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
Mar 14, 2017 rated it it was amazing
event thought this book is for the young adult sector, Icouldn't put it down. Really enjoyed the book.
Jamie Williams
May 15, 2018 rated it liked it
When I was given the assignment to read a survival book, I immediately thought of Gary Paulsen and his books because I already knew that I liked his writing style. I read "The Transall Saga" by Gary Paulsen. I knew that a lot of his books had to do with survival and this book was no exception. This book connects to the concept of survival because it was about a boy named Mark being forced to survive in a world different than he knew. Finding yourself alone in world that is strangely unfamiliar s ...more
Jun 03, 2017 rated it it was amazing
The Transall Saga is a fantasy book about a boy named Mark Harrison who is just a 13-year-old boy. One of his hobbies that he loves hiking and learning about survival techniques. One day, as he is hiking through the Magruder Missile Range, he is attacked by a snake, causing him to fall into a strange light, and then being transported into a new and unfamiliar world that is somewhat similar to Earth. He then has to try and survive in this world and try and find a way back home. Some things I didn ...more
Jon Muehring
May 23, 2018 rated it it was amazing
In the book The Transall Saga by Gary Paulsen, Mark has a solo camping trip in a desert where he finds a weird blue light. He falls through the light and ends up in an odd world where everything is red. To get back to his own time, he must make a life within the world. On his quest, Mark discovers different tribes with human-like creatures and must learn to be part of the tribe itself. He meets a tribe called the Tsook, where he learns that he is on Earth but in the future. He thinks that he is ...more
Mar 05, 2018 rated it it was amazing
I was inspired to read this because I really enjoyed hatchet, so i thought i would give this novel a try. This book shared many of the great qualities of Hatchet, such as the struggle and survival aspects: However, it pleasantly surprised me by delving into deeper qualities of life like loosing track of your goals, giving up, and loneliness. The imagery in this book is excellent and helped me to relax and dive into this wonderful and vivid world. It contained many Twists and turns that kept me ...more
Sep 23, 2017 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
If you like Gary Paulsen, you will probably like this book as a sci-fi version of Hatchet. If you're a sci-fi fan, you probably won't care for this. While camping in the desert, thirteen-year-old Mark stumbles into a blue light that transports him into a place that seems just enough like Earth that he can use his recently acquired survival skills to stay alive while trying to find the mysterious blue light and return home. I read this because I'd recently seen a quote where Gary Paulsen said he ...more
Feb 14, 2018 rated it really liked it
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Apr 21, 2018 rated it really liked it
I'm probably not the best person to review this, but it pleasantly surprised me. It was adventurous, fun, and just all around a good read (especially for kids!).

My little sisters Grade 7 class is reading it and, being my sister, she finished it very early. And almost forced me to read it this afternoon (and of course I said yes). And I just... couldn't stop. it sucked me in and I loved it.

So basically, I'm so glad my sister gets the chance to read such and interesting book for school. And that's
Nov 29, 2018 rated it really liked it
I remember reading this when I was in grade school. Something popped into my head about it a while back and so I had to re-read it. Still a relatively simple read. Much more of the plot could have been ironed out with more detail and not felt as 'rushed' towards the end, but all in all, I enjoyed the book. Much of it was as I remembered, other parts not so much, but that is to be expected. Overall, I liked the setting and plot and gives one that quick sense of adventure and immersion into a real ...more
William Bentrim
Oct 29, 2017 rated it it was amazing
The Transall Saga by Gary Paulsen

This is a delightful book of survival targeting the YA market. Mark, finds himself somewhere else while hiking in the desert. It is definitely not Kansas. There are strange animals and people and he is in a savage, primitive time.

The story is about how Mark grows, learns and survives. He makes allies, friends and enemies and discovers a great deal about himself. There are some surprises in the book but the best feature is the depiction of the growth and maturity
Tommy Grooms
Feb 25, 2018 rated it really liked it
The Transall Saga is Gary Paulsen’s foray into the science fiction genre, which I enjoyed very much as a child. 13 year-old Mark Harrison encounters a strange blue light during a solo hiking trip and finds himself in a new world, in which he learns to survive and thrive. It’s a solid and entertaining story, if a tad cliched, but it probably would have served better as a series: the plot feels harried as large swaths of time are described in summary, and I wish more time could have been spent lea ...more
Sarah Habibi
Feb 26, 2017 rated it it was amazing
I read this as a kid and for whatever reason it popped back into my mind today, at the age of 26. I remember being wrapped up in the world Paulsen created and how engaging the writing was to 10 year old me (possibly even younger me). From the striking images of the alien world we us readers found ourselves in to the adventure that Mark found himself on. Definitely a must read for kids of all ages (to be honest) who enjoy science fiction and adventures.
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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