Book Selling – another occupation in Nigeria


This occupation is popularly known as Book shop in Nigeria, no one ever calls it Book selling. Everyone describes them as “that man/woman that sells book”. Having a bookshop around my vicinity has helped me a lot, especially when I was in my secondary school, I remember going to buy Essential Mathematics textbook, Essential Economics, Essential Geography (I was a commercial students but I had great love for geography as a science –being the best geography student in my class, I loved sketching the map of Nigeria, indicating Kainji dam, Shiroro dam, Jos plateau, Mangrove swamps, to mention a few), Waec & Jamb past questions, etc.

Text books can be cheap in Nigeria depending on the size. It ranges from ₦200 to ₦3000+. Personally, I have never bought a textbook of more than ₦2000.

The bookseller is a Christian from Anambra State and she has been selling books in this particular shop for over 17 years. Before her husband got married to her, he was the only person supervising the shop (the husband has been in the business for close to 30 years).

Her husband learnt book-selling from his master which he served for 8 years as an “Nwa boy” (master-servant relationships is predominant in the Eastern part of the country, among the Igbo’s. Some group of young boys will work under their master for about 8 years and after the completion of their tenure, they get settled/paid off with huge amount of money to start up their own business. I love the master-servant relationship a lot because it has been a source of empowerment for the Igbo’s, preserved culture & ethics and even made things better for us).

The book seller said that book selling is a lucrative business because they use it to train their children and sustain their family. Besides, she believes that once someone is doing something and stays away from bad things, God will in his own time prosper them directly or through their children.

She advised that other Nigerians who in one may way or the other may be looking for a source of income should try and get engaged in any business. Because idleness is a bad phenomenon and it leads to some many negative things such as prostitution, a young man impregnating girls up and down. If these people are busy, they will not have time for all those acts because they will leave their houses early in the morning to go their place of business and come back late, so there wouldn’t be time for such.Though some people can be naturally lazy.

What is your opinion about this? Do you have bookshops around your area? Kindly, share your thoughts below.

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