Right now I am reading Cry to Heaven by Anne Rice. Most people think of Anne Rice as a vampire novelist. I did, before I started on my quest to read all of her novels.
Cry to Heaven has nothing to do with vampires. This novel is about castrati in Italy (obviously not set in the current time period). Very few women appear in this novel, and the majority of the men in the novel have been "neutralized."
I was probably about half-way through the novel before I started pondering what the novel was really about. What it means to be a man. Kind of an odd topic for a woman to write about. Then it struck me that all of the Anne Rice novels I have read so far are about men. Women rarely play an important role in her stories, often they exist to move the men's stories forward.
Perhaps odder still is that so many of the men in Rice's stories are homosexual or bisexual. I find myself stuck on why a woman would choose the point of focus that Rice has. I would love to talk with a man who had read some of Rice's work. I'm not sure if Rice has some amazing insight into the male psyche or if her characters are caricatures drawn from her own assumptions.