A common adage for writers is "to write about what you know." Given that, Ramsland doesn't so much as give us a run-down on Anne Rice's life as give us an explanation of how her life has affected her stories. Not only does Rice consciously write about the things she has studied, but she subconsciously tells us about her life.
Ending just after "The Witching Hour" was published, this book is a little outdated. The final words from the author discuss some of the projects that Anne Rice was working on. From what is said here, Rice was not thinking about spending as much time with the vampires as she eventually did. She also was thinking of returning to the mummy; however, I have yet to see this happen.
The text gives an account of Anne Rice's childhood and influences, her relationship and marriage to Stan Rice, her daughter who died of leukemia, and her son. It also discusses some of the work she has done once she began to create a name for herself. As mentioned, this isn't the meat of the text.
The meat of the text is in showing how she is resolving personal and subconscious issues in her writing. She is also sharing her memories of New Orleans and San Francisco. Many of her characters reflect herself and people in her life.
Although this is fascinating, it leads to a "bogging down." To ensure that the readers remember the characters, Ramsland provides long summaries of the key texts from this time, including the Anne Rampling and A.N. Roquelaure novels. This disrupts the narrative and keeps the readers from truly connecting with the flow of Rice's life.
Nevertheless, I would recommend this book to young writers and fans of Anne Rice.