You know you’re a sword geek when you notice the sword before anything else on the cover.

Okay, let’s face it. Like most men, I’m a sucker for a pretty face. Like most geeks, I’m a sucker for a pretty face with a smart brain. But give that smart, pretty woman a sword, and . . . sorry, where was I?

When my friend and future co-author Elizabeth Hajek was offered the chance to host a giveaway for Michelle Moran’s upcoming book Rebel Queen, I thought “good for her.” When I realized it was about Rani Lakshmibai, I thought “I should really buy this book because history and battles and sword-wielding queens oh my.”

Now, I should say that I know about as much about Indian history as I do about American football. That is, I can kind of recognize the names involved and where they’re supposed to go and vaguely how things fit together (though I still can’t find the goalie), but just like I’ll confuse an NFL team with ones that play baseball (that’s the one that plays indoor and bounces the ball a lot, right?), I’ll get north and south India mixed up, which, take it from me, is worse than getting northern India mixed up with Pakistan.

However, as I read the back cover text for Rebel Queen, I realized that I had heard of Rani Lakshmibai.

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