One of the pull-quotes on my copy of Water for Elephants mentions it having "a majestic, mute heroine". I was puzzled about this reference, because the only main female character I could think of was Marlena, who could possibly be called "majestic", but not "mute". About three quarters through the book I suddenly realized there's another main character who is female and fits that description perfectly - Rosie the elephant!
The scene where Jacob is drugged by the two prostitutes, (heavily implied to be rape judging by how he begs them to stop touching him before he passes out. He wakes up dressed like a clown with his testicles shaved. What do you think THEY did to him?