I should first apologize. I’d rather have been announcing that I have copies of Golden Sands ready now, but there was an unforseen (and quite uncharacteristic, to be fair on him) delay from the printer, hence I couldn’t take delivery of the books from him on Saturday which would have made it available today. I should be picking the books up on Tuesday and hence it will be available on Wednesday. Again, I apologize.
I’m experimenting with a mixed model of selling the books and will need your help. The traditional putting the book in bookshops in Nigeria doesn’t work well. They demand for too much, do next to nothing and then renege on remitting your funds to you when they sell. Hence this is how we will sell Golden Sands
- E-Book Via Amazon for readers outside Nigeria who would rather do an e-book. I would communicate the link shortly, as soon as I get confirmation from Amazon
- For residents of UK and US, you can buy hard copies of the book at https://www.africanhighstreet.com/
- For readers in Nigeria, I’ll be sharing phone numbers you can call. I have a network of people who will have the books in stock. All you will have to do is to look at the list and select the person closest to where you stay and call the person. They will agree on meeting up with you and you can buy from them. I have people all over Lagos, Abuja, Kaduna and Ibadan. I’ll be looking for more people in more places, so lemme know if you can. This is how Fifty Shades of Grey sold 40million copies, so it actually works.
- I’m also working on selling through Mocality and DealDey. I’ll announce these once the deals sail through
- I have a trusty guy in Marina Car Park, opposite UBA building. You can get from him too
- I’ll be having book readings in Lagos, Abuja and Kaduna. I’ll be selling signed copies at these events.
- The Lagos Book Reading and Signing will hold on Sunday, October 28 at LaMango on Adekunle Fajuyi Road, GRA, Ikeja. Kickoff time is 3pm (More on this next week).
- For people outside these locations, you can always reach me directly.
I’ll keep exploring more ways to get Golden Sands to you. I appreciate the support, and look forward to seeing some of you at the book reading and signing. Enjoy today’s Tricia’s Nightmare. TL
Kofo was furious. This police force was riddled with all sorts of nonentities. How did that blogger get the story, the images and all, lest than an hour after she reported the crime? She was sure one of the crime scene people that responded to her call must have leaked the information to her. But then, since the informant didn’t have the full details, he must have leaked what he thought was the story. There was no mention of the rape issue and it all made the girl look like a crazed lover who had committed murder after some heated argument. And with the way such news spread, she knew it would trend on twitter, the images would be used as BBM display messages and it would have reached halfway across the world in a matter of hours. This Tricia would have a serious task convincing anyone she was raped by the man she was willingly living with.
Ivie was at her wits end. She hadn’t expected Bruno and Tricia to have problems like this. And a huge problem this was. She still couldn’t wrap her mind around the fact that Bruno was dead. He was really dead. It had been 4years ago that they had stopped seeing each other after he began forming over-possessive. He was a married man, and she didn’t hassle him over it. So she hadn’t expected to be hassled over wanting to have other men to cater to her needs. She wasn’t interested in marrying any of them and end up like her elder sister who gave her all to Oloye only to become old wife. All men were like that, Bruno included. So she had ended the relationship with Bruno but had kept him as a good friend. Now, she couldn’t believe she was parking in a police station to try and get her niece out from being held for his murder. Taju’s voice broke her out of her reverie. He was the real reason she hadn’t wanted Tricia to stay with her. He was the only man she had been in a steady relationship with for over seven years now, and as they would say, he had her mumu button. But knowing Taju, she would not have felt comfy having her fine niece in the house. She had already caught him with two of her friends in the past but he had been forgiven. She doubted she would be able to forgive Tricia if she caught her in bed with Taju. But for all his flaws, Taju was a brilliant lawyer. “I will try what I can, but if they’re holding her for murder, they will not release her on bail. And a lot depends on who is holding her, if it’s the Anti Rape people or the regular police”.
Presently, they got to the Ojuelegba Police Station.
In London, Teju Bello received a phone call that brought a smile to his face. He had left Nigeria as a ten year old and now he was thirty-seven. He had joined the police at twenty-one with superhero dreams of bringing bad guys to justice. What he hadn’t bargained for was the way the system had limited what he could achieve. Now, a little older and wiser, he had left the force and chose to offer his services to more lucrative endeavors. And suspicious insurance companies were some his most lucrative customers. “Nigeria?” he asked, to be sure he wasn’t hearing wrongly. He had been in the business for seven years now, and had never had to go anywhere in Africa. “Yes”, the voice on the other end said. “I’ve emailed the details to you. It’s a black hole to us, we don’t trust anything that comes from there and we need you to go in and get us confirmation of no foul play.”
“You said you got the documents for the claims today?” Teju asked.
“Yes,” the caller responded.
“That’s a tad too quick and seamless, especially for a death that occurred earlier this morning.”
“My thoughts exactly. Sounded a bit too ready. That’s why we need you to look into it.”
“Going to Nigeria will cost a premium.”
“Teju, you’re Nigerian, why should I pay you a premium?”
“I’m sure you couldn’t get anyone else who wanted to go. And anyway, to answer you straight, I’d have to spend the extra cash to get information out. Nothing goes for free there”.
“How much more are we looking at?”
Teju wondered how much the settlement was worth. His extra demand was not even negotiated. But he would only have to wait to read the email. He hated asking for information he could easily get by himself. He hung up and settled down to work.
Oloye received his guests at the gate to his compound. His efforts at hospitality were dampened by the grim faces of the Dicksons. He had set his wives to task to prepare correct starch with banga soup and ordered the sweet red wine he knew the chief liked to be chilled. When his offer of a meal to ensure that tummies were filled before minds were emptied was declined, he knew this visit was no joking matter. When they had sat down, Chief Dickson cleared his throat and said “Let us find somewhere we can talk,” hinting that they should start immediately. He signaled his wives and they cleared the dishes and then left them alone. Chief Dickson was a bear of a man, with a mole on his left cheek that seemed to call for attention. It always took a supreme effort to talk with him without looking at it. And he always took note of those who made that effort. Dame Dickson was just as large as her husband, and beside them, Oloye looked small. Her body language made it abundantly clear to him that he would not find an ally in her today in whatever discussion they had. As soon as they were alone, Chief Dickson launched into proverb-laced conversation “The toad does not run in daylight except it is pursued or pursuing something. No matter how big a matter is, we cannot use a knife to cut it. There is no point throwing the coconut up to break it; we will hit it head on. Our son called us with a grave report today. He tells us your daughter (Oloye noted this. Normally he would say “our wife”) has been arrested by the police in Lagos on murder charges.”
Oloye was dumbfounded. How could his daughter have been the one arrested when she was the one raped? And murder? Something was certainly not right. It took him a few moments to recover from the shock before he stuttered “Chief, I can explain. It is an unfortunate…”
Dame cut in “We have not finished talking!” Oloye felt the heat rise in his face as the woman shut him up. “She was living with the man she killed, and the man was her lover!” she shouted, loud enough for his wives who would be eavesdropping to hear.
Chief turned to face her “woman will you shut up and let me speak.” She scoffed and sank back into her chair as he turned back to Oloye and continued “So, my friend (he wasn’t sounding friendly), can you explain how your daughter, who was supposed to marry my son shortly, was living with a lover in Lagos.”
Oloye was surprised. He wondered how Maro in remote Bonny had heard news of what happened just a few hours ago in Lagos. And as it was with such news, by the time it had reached him in Bonny, it was well distorted. He desperately searched for the best words to manage the situation.
“My in-law, I can explain. Her mother has left for Lagos already to see for us what is really happening.”
“Oloye, you have not answered any of the questions I asked. Was she living with a man, and is she in police custody for the murder of this man?”
Oloye stammered “let me explain. It’s not what it seems.”
Dame again jumped into the conversation, her eyes flashing like car headlamps “Chief, the man cannot deny it. Even the way his eyes shift have already answered it.”
Chief did not bother to reprimand his wife this time. He just stared hard and long at Oloye and then rose. Oloye stood, and attempted to say something but was hushed by the chief, “we will see ourselves out, do not bother.”
The smell inside the police station hung in the air like a secondary ceiling and Ivie could not help but wonder what it would be like in the cell. She often wondered if there had been any improvements on police stations since the colonial times. It certainly didn’t feel that way. Taju was arguing with the DPO presently “My client deserves to at least see her lawyer!” The DPO, a shaggy man in a uniform slightly less threadbare than those of the constable that ushered them in, spoke in a high raspy voice “Mr. Lawyer of the accused killer, you can speak all the English you want, but you will not see her. And she cannot go on bail, since it’s murder we are talking about.” Taju was livid “Even if she killed the president, she has a right to see her lawyer! How can a whole DPO be ignorant of that simple fact?”
The DPO got up menacingly “Oga, if you keep insulting me like this, I will ask them to lock you up for something, anything. You will know that inside cell is not a hotel.”
Ivie was just as exasperated as Taju, but she knew they couldn’t win Taju’s way. “Sir,” she swallowed bile as she called the scrawny DPO sir “I’m pleading with you, let me just see my sister briefly, I can make it worth your while.” The DPO smiled, like a bird of prey sizing her up. She saw his eyes flit over her Peruvian hair, her gold wristwatch and down to her well manicured fingers. He began to rub his hands together “madam, it’s just human sympathy that is making me allow you see her o, if left to this lawyer, you would not see even her shadow. But I like your approach.” Taju wanted to say something and then thought better of it. However it was achieved, they were going to see Tricia and he would hear her version of the events of the night.
Moments later, they were seated opposite Tricia. Apart from her hair looking unkempt, they had at least allowed her wear jeans and t-shirt. When Tricia sat opposite them, Taju spoke first “Trish, I’m really sorry about this, and I’m going to do all I can to get you out of here. But you’ll need to tell me what happened in as much detail as you can remember. Don’t leave anything out, no matter how insignificant you think it is”
Tricia looked from the police officer to Taju and her eyes finally rested on Ivie. “What did he expect you to tell me?” she growled and it was only then Ivie saw the disdain the eyes gazing at her held.