Okay, so my favorite author is Jack Vance. And my two favorite series of novels by him are the Dying Earth (inspiration for D&D's "Vancian magic") and Tschai: Planet of Adventure. The four Tschai novels are about a terran pilot who's spaceship is shot down up unknown attackers, crashes on the planet Tschai, and then travels far and wide trying to get a ship to get back home. However, the only spaceships are owned by alien races colonizing the planet. The planet does have a "native" population of humans who are at a much lower level of technology and who have several interesting regional cultures of their own. And there are some mysterious truly native aliens lurking about as well.
Each of the alien races holding parts of the planet has humans working for them. The most trusted humans of each race have closely assimilated the culture of their alien patrons. Some are even surgically altered to appear more like their alien masters. The three main alien factions are not friendly but there are not openly at war. For them the planet is currently a quiet backwater.
Anyway, little did I know that Delcourt of France started publishing a series of graphic novels (bande dessinee) called Le Cycle de Tschaï in 1998. It's awesome that there is a graphic version of my favorite novels but also excellent that it's by French artists. Ever since I discovered Heavy Metal magazine back in high school I've enjoyed a lot of great graphic art from France. So now I know what to hint about for my birthday!