Sytris’ new branch in Osu

Sytris  Bookservice [NB:  the website has not been updated for a while] is one of the local companies which we use at work to supply tertiary level textbooks, so most of my contact with them is virtually all by email or phone – and related to the needs of students and faculty of Ashesi University College, where I work.  I knew there were also physical bookshops – at Ghana Institute of Management and Public Administration (GIMPA), on the Spintex Road (one of the major roads linking the eastern suburbs of Accra with the main road from Accra to Legon) and also at Radford University College.  I had actually been to the bookshop on the Spintex Road a couple of times, but the traffic and stock generally tended to be a constraint.

Recently I heard that the shop on Spintex had closed, and another branch had opened in Osu – on the major road locally known as “Oxford Street” , though I think the real name is Cantonments Road, despite the fact that both appear on Google Maps.

So time to take a look…  what I didn’t do though is take my camera, so no photos unfortunately!

Although Marc Cofie House has been around for a while, there is construction going on, so every retailer occupying the building is responsible for their own signage.  I hope that changes, because even access from the street is somewhat limited to those with cars, as there is a security bar before entering the parking lot – not very customer friendly in my opinion.  Sytris is on the second floor – so up we went…

The shop is quite large, open, and light, with large windows overlooking the street.  I am guessing that in the future there will be some displays in the windows in order to attract customers though at the moment there is a large banner with the name of the company.  The shelves on the walls are filled with mostly textbooks, with lighter fiction – aka story books – on tables, and in some magazines in racks.  Lots of graphic novels – otherwise known as comic books – too, so altogether a pretty good selection, though tending to lighter fiction and chick lit I would say.

Naturally I bought something (I am not sure that I can enter a bookshop without doing so):   a couple of job and motivational books for those with me, plus a Tintin book and a mystery.

I hope the good start will continue, and I will be a regular visitor!


Missed reading by Nii Ayikwei Parkes

Tail of the blue bird


On Saturday 8 May I read in the Daily Graphic newspaper that Nii Ayikwei Parkes was giving a reading at one of the local bookshops here in Accra.  Unfortunately, I had made another family commitment, so couldn’t make it.

I was actually disappointed, because I know Sytris, who were hosting the reading, and I wondered why I had not received any email, text, hard copy or phone notification that such an event was going on.  I did send a text asking for more info, but it was really too late to totally reorganize my day!

I must say that 8 May was one of those days when many events seemed to be taking place, and while some I knew I wouldn’t attend, there were a couple, such as the Parkes reading, that I might have, given that I have read his novel, Tail of the blue bird.  Plus there was the added attraction that the Accra Book Club put it on our next batch of books to be read and discussed!  Additionally I had had some email correspondence with Parkes when his book first came out regarding its availability here in Accra

Oh well, I guess it is one of those things, and obviously I am not on the right kind of “lists” or “loop”   Definitely something to work on, and also to kind of complain about.  At times I do find that Accra events can be quite insular, with invitations being sent out to those “known” to the event organizers, especially if there aren’t paid newspaper adverts.  Or maybe there were TV or radio adverts or announcements, and I didn’t hear them?