Being a reader and a reviewer, it’s easier to get lost in the cacophony of latest releases and trending books, and more often than not this results in one reading only those books that are in vogue.

Even though I myself am not immune to this and partake in it generously, this phenomenon kind of bothers the reader and blogger in me.

Where then is my sense of responsibility? Where is my sense of discovery? What is my contribution to discovering gems, especially in Indian literature, that have hitherto remained lesser known, not for the want of talent and quality but probably for the want of sheer lack of luck?

Thus, the reader in me is motivated time and time again to dig into those bookshelves, audiobook catalogs, and Kindle unlimited catalogs and try to find out books that speak to the Indian in us; that reflect our roots and at the same time pay homage to the diversity of this nation.

In one such recent quest, I ended up discovering and reading C.P. Belliappa’s Tongue of the Slip, a book that compiles everyday slice-of-life writings written with wit, wisdom, warmth, and a keen sense of observation.

But let me introduce you to the author first.

C.P. Belliappa is a multi-genre writer who specializes in humor, history, and human-interest stories. He frequently contributes to newspapers, websites, and magazines.

Belliappa earned a master’s degree in chemical engineering from the Stevens Institute of Technology in the United States.

He currently resides in Coorg, where he manages his coffee estate and is actively involved in the management of educational institutions, including an engineering college.

In addition to Tongue of the Slip, Belliappa is also the author of Victoria Gowramma: The Lost Princess of Coorg, Tale of a Tiger’s Tail and Other Yarns from Coorg, and Nuggets from Coorg History.

In this book, Belliappa delves into snippets from his everyday life, some ordinary some extraordinary, and presents to us a life that is not just different from us in terms of history but also geography.

Unlike most of us city-dwellers, Belliappa is a resident of the verdant green coffee plantations of Coorg, and thus this geographical setting plays an important part in the setting the vibe and flavour of the book.

From snippets of Coorg history to its everyday life, from its weather to its people, from its canine to its feline, from its social customs to its family histories, from its home stays to its home estates and clock tower – Coorg becomes an integral part of the book, and this is something that I enjoyed very much.

Many of the anecdotes also come from the author’s childhood and young adult days especially his days as a student in Chennai and Mysore. Then there is the hilarious story about his time in the US when he came across a Corsican family.

Some experiences relate to the special events that he attended and the special treatment that he received owing to his father being an important figure in the political circles (Mr. C.M. Poonacha was an elected Lok Sabha member and later the Minister for Railways in the Union Government).

These include a chance to meet the who’s who of Bollywood and even lunch with the then President of the country.

Some relate to his early days of marriage while others allude to the humorous trials and tribulations of everyday married life. Some particularly funny ones are those that relate to his foreign travels and adventures in countries like China, Malaysia, and France.

Some imagine a parallel universe where life as we know it is quite amusing whereas others often see him escaping into a dream-like fantasy.

The part where he narrates his rendezvous with the legendary Ruskin Bond will stay forever with me, and just like Ruskin Bond tells the author, I too believe that his writing style is quite similar to Mr. Bond’s. And mind it, I say this as a compliment.

All in all, the writings are not just sharp but funnily so, and while they might not give you those laugh-out-loud moments, they will surely manage to bring a smile to your face.

Highly recommended to those who have a thing for the simple joys of everyday life and who love to read memorable and sometimes even ordinary episodes from the lives of regular Indians.

Can’t wait to read it? Buy your copy of Tongue of the Slip using the link below.