Sometimes truth is both stranger and more delightfully entertaining than fiction. The 18th century was an era of violent contrasts and radical change, intellectual brilliance and war, spies and diplomatic intrigue, elegance and cruelty. One of the century s most mysterious figures was the Chevalier d Eon, one of history s first known transvestites who lived as both man and woman. The noble-born d Eon served as a spy for the French government, infiltrating the Russian court as a maid of honor to the empress. He became so well known for his activities that he lived the last 30 years of his life openly as a woman (and a European celebrity). Written from the perspective of this historical figure, this ambitious novel from much-loved conceptual artist Brian O Doherty reveals d Eon s radical modernity, certified by his attitudes to gender and his examination of his own nature.