Downtown book vendor making life easier for shoppers

August 16, 2018
Shelly assists a customer with her back-to-school shopping.
Shoppers trying to get back-to-school deals in downtown Kingston.

For nearly a decade, Shelly, as she is affectionately called by shoppers, has been making herself available in the downtown Kingston shopping district for parents seeking books and back-to-school supplies .

A regular vendor for the most part, during the back-to-school season, she can be found along King Street assisting parents to get books required for the new school term.

Shelly told THE STAR, "I have been doing this for eight years. Parents come here, and we get the books they need. People come from near and far. Some a dem say if we can't come a Ochi come sell. We have some dedicated customers, so dem come and ask for books. They come from all Old Harbour and St Thomas."

She told our news team that she has one customer who travels to Jamaica from the Cayman Islands and purchases books for college from her.




While our news team had dialogue with Shelly, she was multitasking, assisting persons with book lists.

"Our prices are reasonable. I have connections with some of the publishers ... and can sell the books cheaper than the bookstores. We have shops in the arcade, and some people know where to find us. Otherwise, we are here. We come to them," Shelly said.

However, she told THE STAR that this year, sales have been slow compared to 2017 and 2016.

We asked her what may be contributing to that, and she said, "Maybe the change of books. For instance, a lot of people come for Let's Learn, a pre-school book, and The New Integrated GSAT. Those books are not in stock, maybe by month end."

Shelly told THE STAR that the Christmas period is another time when she gets orders for books.

She said that helping to satisfy the needs of parents is pleasing as she understands the pressures some face during the months leading up to the new school term.

One shopper told THE STAR, "We glad that people like Shelly can help us get the books, and at a better price than the store dem, because weh we save on the books can spend on something else for back to school. It nuh easy."

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