Blackwell North Amer 'George Sand' (Aurore Dupin, 1804-1876) was France's best-selling writer, rivalled in her time only by Victor Hugo. Yet she was known as much for her excessive life as for her plays, stories, and enduring novels like Indiana, Lelia and Manprat. The daughter of a prostitute and an aristocrat, Sand grew up acutely aware of social injustice and prejudice. Convent-educated, she became a mischievous, flamboyant rebel: her long, troubled romance with Chopin was just one of many affairs with well-known figures, but her most desperate love was for a beautiful actress. Legendary for her cigars and scandalous cross-dressing, she also enjoyed tender, fraught, female relationships with her grandmother, mother, daughter and beloved granddaughter. Sand was at the centre of French intellectual and artistic life: her circle included Liszt and Delacroix, Balzac and Flaubert, the great friend of her later years. A believer in equality of the sexes, she thought marriage 'a barbarous institution': a socialist, she acted as Minister for Propaganda after the Revolution of 1848. No one quite matches George Sand - she remains unique, powerful, vital and mysterious. In this new biography Belinda Jack gives the full flavour of her personality and delves beneath the surface of Sand's life and her age, to show how her art both reflected and shaped her life. Here is an unforgettable portrait of a remarkable writer - and an extraordinary woman.