New Book Program Encourages Reading, Discussion

UACCM and the Conway County Library are cooperating on the development of “One book, One Community,” an all campus, all-community book discussion program starting this fall. Students, faculty, and staff at UACCM, Conway County Library patrons and book lovers throughout the area will be encouraged to read Belle in the Slouch Hat, by Mimi Mathis and engage in thoughtful, productive discussions about the issues raised in the book.

Belle in the Slouch Hat is an adventure story of 15-year old Belle Brayden, who lived in Missouri during the Civil War. Belle’s brother was a member of Quantrill’s raiders and was killed by a vicious Yankee captain. When Belle started wearing her brother’s slouch hat, her life changed. In her quest to find her brother’s killer, she began having more adventures and misadventures, eventually joining forces with a spiritual mentor and her 16-year-old cousin Winnie. The book was chosen as a May Book of the Month by book, one of the largest and oldest book review sites on the web. Mimi Mathis, the author, is a retired nurse living in Fayetteville, Arkansas.

All Reading II students at UACCM will read the book as part of their class during fall and spring semesters. Three book discussion groups will be formed and meet on August 24, September 21 and October 19 on campus. Dr. Joe Arn, retired professor from UCA, Dr. Jeffery Whittingham, associate professor at UCA and Jay Carter, director of the Conway County Library will lead the three reading groups. On November 16, all participants and anyone interested will have a chance to meet the author and hear her experiences as she wrote the book. Interested in participating? Register and pick up a copy of the book at the Conway County Library in downtown Morrilton and at the E. Allen Gordon Library at UACCM. For more information, contact Leroy Gattin at (501) 977-2033 or at


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