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The Yanks Are Starving: A Novel of the Bonus Army

4.34  ·  Rating details ·  77 ratings  ·  34 reviews
Two armies. One flag. No honor.
The darkest day in American history.

Former political journalist Glen Craney has enthralled readers with novels set during the medieval crusades and Scottish wars of independence. Now the award-winning author turns to World War I and the Great Depression, bringing to life the little-known story of the Bonus March of 1932, which culminated in a
Paperback, 562 pages
Published 2014 by Brigid's Fire Press
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4.34  · 
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 ·  77 ratings  ·  34 reviews

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Sep 14, 2014 rated it it was amazing

The Yanks are Starving: A Novel of the Bonus Army by Glen Craney is a novel set in the pivotal decades of the opening of the twentieth century. Craney is a graduate of Indiana School of Law and Columbia University Graduate School of Journalism. As a member of the Washington Press Corps, he covered the Iran Contra Trial for Congressional Quarterly magazine. Previously Craney practiced trial law.

World War I is my favorite period of history to read about bec
Clif Hostetler
Sep 27, 2014 rated it it was amazing
This is a carefully crafted historical novel that describes the dirty underbelly of American social conditions in the early twentieth century leading up to World War I and then culminating in the shameful treatment of "Bonus Army" in 1932. However, readers who are anxious to read about what organizers called the "Bonus Expeditionary Force" will have to read through the first half of this book where the lives of various individuals are followed until they converge in Washington D.C. in the early ...more
Mark Mortensen
Sep 04, 2014 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: wwi, politics, fiction
This historical novel spans the first third of the 20th Century in America culminating with the 1932 national Bonus Army protest in Washington, D.C.

The Great War touched the lives of all Americans, but those who participated overseas under the umbrella of the American Expeditionary Forces (AEF) witnessed much sacrifice and horror. Armistice assured freedom and peace, but the monetary fruits of victory did not filter down to the common veteran. As veterans tried to move forward and put the war b
Nathan Mercer
Aug 20, 2014 rated it it was amazing
There are moments in time that truly are "pivot points" that affect not just individuals, but entire countries. The governments handling of "The Bonus Army" veterans is one such pivot point. This incident is usually glossed over in schools, but it was truly a watershed moment that has been proven to repeat itself in various ways even to this day. For those of you, who like myself, just had a passing knowledge of this event - it occurs in the middle of the Great Depression on July 28, 1932. Veter ...more
Stanley McShane
Jan 29, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: associate-review
The Yanks are Starving is a masterfully written saga of pre and post World War 1. Glen Craney explores the lack of loyalty of battle officers for their troops and government’s abandonment of the welfare of the troops who fight for their country. This book explores the lives of eight individuals from wildly differing experiences and backgrounds whose clash in July 1932 culminates in a poignant and sad story of American history.

Douglas MacArthur appears to be a poser and a posturer. His lack of l
Eileen Iciek
Aug 25, 2017 rated it it was amazing
Loved this novel about the plight of WWI veterans during the Depression who sought to have the "Bonus" Congress had voted for them paid in 1932 instead of 1945 (who said today's politicians were the only ones pushing forward their financial obligations?). The author did a great job of telling the story from the point of view of a number of famous, not so famous, and completely unknown individuals. The famous include Herbert Hoover, Douglas MacArthur, and George Patton.

I moved to the Washington
Helen Hollick
Apr 10, 2018 rated it really liked it
This book has received a Discovering Diamonds Review:
Helen Hollick
founder #DDRevs
'The author tells the story from the points of view of several different characters, which works very well ... combines the best of fiction and history.'
Andy Lopata
Mar 12, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
An epic look at a seemingly forgotten event in America history. Brilliantly weaves fact and fiction, as a result creating a different perspective to ordinary biographies and history books.
Nov 02, 2014 rated it liked it
Actual rating: 3.5 stars.

Since the author asked me to read and review this book in exchange for a Kindle copy, I should explain my perhaps quirky star rating scale. Four stars, to me, is a top rating. Of all the 400+ books I've reviewed here on Goodreads, I've given just one five-star rating, that to the entire body of Aubrey/Maturin novels by Patrick O'Brian. So, three-and-a-half stars for this historical novel? That's an excellent rating from me.

I thought The Yanks Are Starving a compelling re
Aug 10, 2014 rated it it was amazing
The Yanks are Starving: A Novel of the Bonus Army by Glen Craney

A highly recommended read for everyone. Very enjoyable!

This is a great story. I was hooked from the start and it just kept me enthralled.

The characters are fascinating. I love how the author explains in the "Authors Notes" how a few of his characters (Ozzie and Anna -two of my faves) came to be. A fine effort to show respect and to recognize the many men and women who sacrificed much, who suffered through years of a kind of hell th
Katelyn Shaver
Oct 12, 2018 rated it really liked it
Shelves: arc, drama, fiction, history
I received this book as a Goodreads First Read and I want to thank the author for giving me the opportunity to read this novel.

“The Yanks Are Starving: A Novel of the Bonus Army” is a well-written book about the bonus army. The narrative was thoughtfully woven and the characters came to life as individuals. It is obvious the author did extensive research and well knows this period of history.

The only area where I felt this novel could have been improved was on the pacing and focus. I felt that
May 03, 2014 rated it it was amazing
[The Yanks Are Starving] by [Glen Craney] was a very well written book that I really did not want to put down. Which is why I often found my eReader on the floor the next morning where it dropped. As a student of history I am glad to see one of the most glossed over and darkest times in American history addressed. The Bonus Army was a real thing. Our government asked young men to defend democracy overseas but when they returned they were shunned and treated as criminals.

Although some of Craney's
Christoph Fischer
Nov 15, 2015 rated it it was amazing
"The Yanks are Starving: A Novel of the Bonus Army" by Glen Craney is a large and complex novel covering so much more than only the Bonus March from the title - which in itself is a truly inspired and appreciated choice. The protest march by WWI veterans is not widely known about and this fills the gap in my knowledge not only with a sharp focus on the events. Crabey goes back to the beginning of the century and to several locations to show how interconnected worldwide events are and how individ ...more
Jun 06, 2015 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: favorites
Had "The Yanks Are Starving" on my to read list for over a year. Glad that I finally got around to reading this splendidly written account of the men who fought in WWI and who subsequently participated in the Bonus War Army of 1932.

The book is 559 pages long, yet the only time it seemed to run slow was during the description of the Bonus Army settling into camps in Washington, DC. It could have been a little more condensed.

That said, I am happy to give this incredible novel ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐
Chaplain Stanleigh Chapin
One of the best

As a child of the early 1930's, this was a quite accurate to the real happening. I had several relatives who participated in the bonus march. During WW II, although they had sons and other family members fighting, they would get very agitated at the mention of MacAuthur, Patton. In the news.
. .
Paul Conder
Mar 14, 2014 rated it it was amazing
This is a great read, and a very interesting part of US history I had never heard of before.
Feb 26, 2017 rated it liked it
I found reading about the two periods very interesting from an historical point of view. WWI and the Veterans "sit in" in Washington DC during the Depression. I knew of the shooting of veterans but had never really had much of the context which this novel provided.
This is a sprawling epic of a novel which has at its core a shameful episode of American history – the story of the Bonus Army.

The Bonus Army were a group of veterans who had all served in the trenches during the First World War. In 1932, at the height of the depression, out of work and on the brink of starvation, they converged on Washington to demand the ‘bonus’ they had been promised for their service. For weeks, while Congress and Senate debated their fate, they lived in squalid camps around
John Jeter
Nov 05, 2013 rated it it was amazing
Glen Craney’s THE YANKS ARE STARVING would make a compelling film, of course, but the richness of his prose and the near-four-dimensional portraits we get of each and every character and even the settings here, would ensure that film critics, who would have to compare the movie script with the book, would fault any movie for failing to live up to this deeply felt epic.

Not only does Mr. Craney's powerful writing engage every sense – even touch and smell – this book also inspires the way great lit
Meg - A Bookish Affair
Jun 09, 2014 rated it really liked it
"The Yanks Are Starving" is a historical fiction novel that takes on the Bonus Army of the 1930s. If you are not familiar with what the Bonus Army was, it was a bunch of World War I veterans that marched through Washington, D.C. in order to demand compensation for their services during the war. They clashed with government officials during an already dark time during American history. Obviously, the country was going through a very difficult time in the early 1930s with the occurrence of the Gre ...more
Kate Vane
Apr 18, 2014 rated it really liked it
I received a free ebook of The Yanks are Starving from the author in exchange for an honest review.

I was intrigued to read this book as it was about a period of US history I knew nothing about, the march by homeless and hungry veterans – the so called ‘Bonus Expeditionary Force’ – on Washington during the Depression.

The book follows a number of real – and some fictitious – characters. The narrative is split into two parts. The first part of the book begins in the early twentieth century and take
Apr 23, 2016 rated it really liked it
The Great Depression. My mother grew up during the hardscrabble 1930's, and told tales about what life was like. The fears from that decade never left her. I don't recall her ever telling us about the Bonus Army, however, and reading The Yanks Are Starving was my first exposure to a shameful incident in America's 20th century history. Many of the "doughboys" who fought in WWI were unemployed during the Depression. They were each entitled to "bonus pay" for their military service, but their certi ...more
Jerry Landry
Sep 20, 2016 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: 2016-reads
For sake of transparency, this review is of a review copy provided by the author. Some stories in American history are retold countless times while others fall to the wayside until a historian or novelist brings them back to the public's attention. Glen Craney's novel is a great example of the resurrection of a story that should be more prevalent in the public consciousness.

Not only does his novel have well-known figures such as General Douglas MacArthur and Dwight D Eisenhower in the mix, but h
Zohar -
Mar 18, 2016 rated it really liked it
Shelves: 2016
The Yanks Are Starving: A Novel of the Bonus Army by Glen Craney is a historical fiction book telling the long forgotten story of the Bonus Army of World War 1 vets and how they were treated.

The Yanks Are Starving: A Novel of the Bonus Army by Glen Craney is a long book, but is very enjoyable for history buffs and those who enjoy historical fiction. I have heard of the Bonus Army before reading this book, it is one of those events we don’t like to talk about very much, but never read anything ab
Monica Fastenau
Nov 14, 2014 rated it liked it
In my mind, the second half of the book, which actually told the story of the Bonus Army, was by far the best part. All the characters from the first half of the book–General MacArthur, the soldier destined for glory, one way or another; Walter W. Waters, the stuttering but powerful leader of the Bonus Army; Hoover, the weak and downtrodden president; Anna, a former Mennonite who became a field nurse in the war; “Happy” Glassford, set up to fail; Ozzie Taylor, oboeist and member of the Harlem He ...more
Jul 31, 2016 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
The Yanks Are Starving: A Novel of the Bonus Army by Glen Craney is a work of historical fiction that often causes the reader to forget that some of the characters are fictional. The book follows these characters as they fought in World War I and after, as they struggled to rebuild their lives after returning home and survive the beginning years of the Great Depression.

Mr. Craney brings these men an women to life through the use of historical documents, of course, but also with dialogue that is
Jan 06, 2014 rated it really liked it
Disclaimer first: I received my copy of this free as a First Reads giveaway.

I wanted very much to read this book when I read the description. I like history and I've been reading a bit more about WWI in the last couple of years. I vaguely remember hearing about "The Bonus Army", but I'm embarrassed to admit that I didn't know as much as I should have.

When I tried to win a copy of this book, at first, I thought it was non-fiction. When I realized it was historical fiction, I was less excited.

I t
Cathy Geha
May 29, 2014 rated it really liked it
For anyone who enjoys history and wants many pages to read this might be the book for you. The introduction of all the characters is interesting but at times I had trouble keeping track of who everybody was. I was intrigued by the treatment of conscientious objectors during the First World War and hated to think that such things happened. From reviews written by others it seems this is a novel based on fact and one well worth reading. I believe I enjoyed the story of Anna, the Mennonite coerced ...more
Nov 15, 2015 rated it it was amazing
Starting in 1900 in China we meet Bert / Herb Hoover. Several chapters then follow different characters through the years 1900 - 1919; all of them will have their meaning and impact on the story that unfolds. There is a rich cast of characters but they all bring their own experience of the early 20th century and flavour to the novel. I found the well chosen and varied backgrounds particularly fascinating and rewarding to read about. There are some great stories within this novel. Although the se ...more
Jul 04, 2015 rated it really liked it
Glen Carney's historical novel "The Yanks are Starving" is a fascinating look back at events leading up to the tragic mistreatment of WWI veterans by the government in July 1932. Following several key figures of the time, including Herbert Hoover, Douglas MacArthur, George Patton, and "Bonus Army" leader Walter Waters, the book covers a period of almost 20 years from the start of WWI through the end of Hoover's presidency. The main plot of the story deals with the experience of many of the chara ...more
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A native Hoosier, GLEN CRANEY is a novelist, screenwriter, journalist, and lawyer. He caught the history bug as a boy while tracing the steps of his ancestors on Civil War battlefields and the reconstructed forts of the first Kentucky pioneers.

His travels around the world have found him playing baseball in Cuba, walking the biblical sites of Israel, exploring the Secret Vatican Archives in Rome, a