The Stars My Destination (book)

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The Stars My Destination
Author Alfred Bester
Genre Science Fiction
Country United Kingdom
Publisher Sidgwick & Jackson
Published 1956
Language English
Pages 232
ISBN 1876963468

The Stars My Destination is a science fiction novel by Alfred Bester.



First published in 1956 (as Tiger! Tiger!), the novel revolves around a hero named Gulliver Foyle, who teleports himself out of a tight spot and creates a great deal of consternation in the process. With its sly potshotting at corporate skullduggery, The Stars My Destination seems utterly contemporary, and has maintained its status as an underground classic for forty years. (

Body Modification

Foyle lands on a planet of "savages", descendants of a research team of scientists that had been lost and marooned in the asteroid belt. These people are tattooed in a Maori style that is described unfavorably in the novel. While unconscious, Foyle is tattooed in this same style without his consent.

Spoiler Warning

After Foyle's forced tattooing, he goes to see someone to have the tattoos removed. As this book is meant to be set in the future, tattooing is now a "dead" art form and the only way to remove his facial tattoos is by inserting something over the tattooing. The marks become invisible to the naked eye until Foyle loses his temper. As his blood pressure rises, his face becomes red except in the areas that were tattooed which now stand out like white stripes, giving his face the appearance of a tiger.


  • He recoiled in terror as the orderly thrust the picture of a hideous tattooed face before him. It was a Maoni mask. Cheeks, chin, nose, and eyelids were decorated with stripes and swirls. Across the brow was blazoned NOMAD. Foyle stared, then cried out in agony. The picture was a mirror. The face was his own. - page 28
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