Deathworld centers on Jason dinAlt, a professional gambler who uses his somewhat erratic psionic abilities to tip the odds in his favor. He is challenged by a man named Kerk Pyrrus (who turns out to be the ambassador from the planet Pyrrus) to turn a large amount of money into an immense sum by gambling at a government-run casino. He succeeds and survives the planetary government's desperate efforts to steal back the money.
In a fit of ennui, he decides to accompany Kerk to his home, despite being warned that it is the deadliest world ever colonized by humans... DEATHWORLD!
Deathworld is one of the classics of the Golden Age of science fiction, born in the pages of Astounding Science Fiction under the editorship of John W. Campbell, Jr.