UTR Staff’s Favorite Books

June 22, 2020

At United Through Reading, we want to help your military family be mission and reading ready. Daily reading is a key part of strengthening a child’s literacy skills and educational development. By having a library of UTR recordings to choose from, your military child will be creating those important bonds with you while learning.

We know that it can be hard to pick the next book to add to your library, and our staff wants to help you pick your next book! Here at United Through Reading we’re a staff of prolific readers, as you can imagine. We not only read on our own, read to our children, but use the United Through Reading program to stay connected to military family members far away. As military spouses, veterans, and supporters, we are always seeking out new books to share with our UTR family, like you. Be sure to order your next book from our app order form or go to your nearest story station to find your copy.

Here are 15 of our favorite books from childhood and our book list:

“My youngest loved Click Clack Moo: Cows That Type by Debbie Cronin, Betsy Lewin, and Randy Travis. He loved black and white cows as a kid and imagining demands from a cow made him laugh.”
– Kate, Air Force Program Manager

“As a child my favorite book was Each Peach Pear Plum by Allan Ahlberg and Janet Ahlberg. It blends nursery rhymes with a game of I Spy in the pictures. I have the very neglected copy I read as a child but bought my kiddos a newer copy.”
– Catherine, Southern California Program Assistant

“We’ve had Blueberries for Sal by Robert McCloskey for years and love to read about Sal, her mother, Little Bear, and his mother. We love doing the sounds the blueberries make as they are dropped into the bucket – ‘Kerplink, Kerplank, Kerplunk.’ When we would go blueberry picking in Alaska we would quote the book, as we dropped the blueberries in the bucket. We each had our own buckets because, like Sal, my boys liked to eat the blueberries I had picked.”
– Tonya, Yellow Ribbon, National Guard, and Air National Guard Program Coordinator

“I remember reading Percy Jackson & the Olympians #1: The Lightning Thief by Rick Riordan together with my daughter when she was in the fifth grade. The descriptions are wonderful, and made us laugh so hard!”
– Carol, Lead Director of Grant Development

The True Story of the Three Little Pigs by Jon Scieszka is hilarious and so enjoyed by our children (even though they were older) and our grandchildren. Alexander T. Wolfe tells the real story – you just can’t get enough of him. And Lane Smith’s illustrations bring it all home! Great fun! Great humor! Great laughter!”
– Sally Ann, CEO

“We were gifted Llama Llama Red Pajama by Anna Dewdney at our baby shower, where we asked for books instead of cards. Little did the gift giver know, our daughter’s name was going to be Alana, which happens to fit in perfectly to the book’s rhythmic pattern. Therefore every time we read “Llama,” we replace it with Alana, so it is now the Alana Alana Red Pajama book in our house and has, in turn, become my daughter’s favorite book. I recommend to any parent or caregiver to change out the names in the books to the child(ren) they are reading the book to, making the storytime that more special.”
– Terri, Lead Director of Advancement

Chicka Chicka Boom Boom by Bill Martin, Jr. and John Archambault was the first book that my husband sent home through United Through Reading during deployment and a big favorite in our house. We always end the book by singing the Alphabet Song, which both of my kids love. Now that my oldest is learning her letters she loves pointing out the ones she knows, like the first letter of her and her sister’s names.”
– Jessica, Director of Marketing and Communications