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How to Greet Strangers: A Mystery

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4.17  ·  Rating Details ·  24 Ratings  ·  11 Reviews
Archer Barron is rebuilding his life after hiding from it for years. Once he had grand expectations-graduating law school, donning drag to express his feminine aspects, and the love of a devoted boyfriend-but fate became cruel. HIV-positive cruel. And a growing involvement with an Oakland Santeria priestess who promised a cure in return for devotion and a lot of cash. His ...more
Paperback, 246 pages
Published February 15th 2013 by Lethe Press (first published January 1st 2013)
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Ilhem
Aug 08, 2013 Ilhem rated it liked it
3,5 stars

“How To Greet Strangers : a Mystery" is not a romance but a fiction told in Archer Barron’s POV. Archer joined the Santeria community when he and Lance discovered they were HIV-positive; they hoped for guidance and miracles and fell into Madrina Michaela’s clutches instead. The price was high on so many levels! Now, Archer is mourning Lance, his career as a lawyer, the bliss of the ocean and his drag personas, and Michaela has been murdered.

Archer is writing a journal where he is pourin
...more
Ije the Devourer of Books
7 Stars

An intricate and rich mystery, slow in some places but ending in a crescendo of the unexpected!!

Archer Barron was once a devoted follower of Santeria but when his world came crashing down with HIV and the loss of his boyfriend he needed a break. He need a break from Santeria and a break from what he once thought he would be.

Archer was once part of a Santeria community led by the charismatic but manipulative Madrina Michaela, a Santeria priestess. He distances himself from the community in
...more
amy boese
Oct 15, 2013 amy boese rated it it was amazing
Shelves: read-2013
This is a brilliant work of fiction with a compelling and complicated narrator. Archer is outstanding, in every moment and every guise. The rich detail of his world as a young law student, a star-struck young lover and a sad penitent are equally evocative. The mystery is less about the murder than it is about where Archer will find equilibrium.

Wonderful this work is, I can't help feeling that Archer is Joyce Thompson's cheap shot to a new mystery voice. Tell me how a white woman from Seattle can
...more
Christina Iyaochun
Mar 31, 2013 Christina Iyaochun rated it it was amazing
A fast paced fictional novel that centers around a Drag Queen initiated son of Yemaya, entangled in a murder mystery. I couldn't put it down. The ending was a doozy! I posted to all my friends, godchildren and acquaintances to get the book. A fun read!
Howard Junker
Apr 12, 2013 Howard Junker rated it it was amazing
This kept me up past my bedtime because I had to finish it in one gulp. So beware, it casts a spell.
Schuyler
Feb 02, 2013 Schuyler rated it it was amazing
This book is amazing. You would be a crazy person not to read it. And fear not, there's more Archer Baron in the works...
Annette
Feb 21, 2015 Annette rated it really liked it
Oh the books that find their way to me. HOW TO GREET STRANGERS is a mystery. A black, cross dressing, gay, Santerria priest with a conscience and good heart gets mixed up in the murder of his Madrina ( spiritual advisor ). As a heterosexual white female there was a lot for me to learn. You will laugh and you will cry.
Ken Cook
Aug 17, 2016 Ken Cook rated it really liked it
Entertaining. A good read - well structured, good chapter breaks. First person narrative from a milieu I haven't encountered, so educational as well. Enough plot points to keep in rolling, with some nice twists.
Craig Andrew
Feb 11, 2014 Craig Andrew rated it it was ok
I almost abandoned this book a couple times, something kept me returning. I found the Afro-Cuban religious facts to be sometimes tedious although they were really the driving force of the plot. I give this a definite--eh.
Taylor McCadney
Mar 19, 2014 Taylor McCadney rated it it was amazing
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
willowdog
Feb 05, 2016 willowdog rated it liked it
When the head priestess of his former Santeria house is murdered, Archer sets out to help find the murderer when he is a person of interest.
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In 1994, Joyce Thompson took a leave of absence from her literary career to work on high tech’s cutting edge. How to Greet Strangers, her sixth novel, marks her return to her first love, fiction.

She is the author of five previous novels, two collections of short stories and a memoir. Her work has been published in six languages and frequently optioned for film.
More about Joyce Thompson...

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