RENOWNED BE THY GRAVE; or, The Murderous Miss Mooney
Being an actress in the late nineteenth century can be fraught with peril. For one thing, there are the lecherous theatregoers--but Bridget Mooney can avoid them, except of course when she doesn't want to. More bothersome are the crimes and mysteries she encounters involving people like Ulysses S. Grant, Lillie Langtry, Thomas Alva Edison, and Jesse James. Two of the ten stories in Renowned Be Thy Grave were finalists for the Agatha Christie Award.
Renowned Be Thy Grave has collected ten high-spirited cases that dump high-living Gilded Age actress/detective/adventurer Bridget Mooney into criminal plots involving the likes of Ulysses S. Grant, Sarah Bernhardt, Thomas Alva Edison, Jesse James, and Mack Sennett.
Late-nineteenth-century actress Bridget Mooney, who had been appearing in original anthologies since 1989, is a lively character, as much rogue as detective. . . . Real-life newspaper clippings at the end of each story add to the enjoyment.
Ellery Queen's Mystery Magazine
Those with an interest in well-researched historical mysteries should enjoy Renowned Be Thy Grave, or The Murderous Miss Mooney by P. M. Carlson. This is a collection of ten stories about Bridget Mooney, the actress and amateur detective who shows up, Zelig-like in stories with such famous historical persons as Ulysses S. Grant, Lily Langtry, Thomas Edison, Charles Parnell, and Sarah Bernhardt.
Dashing, red-haired Bridget Mooney is a traveling actress who takes her pleasure where she finds it, and enjoys a good cigar when she can afford one or lift one from the pocket of a dozing pal. ("If he'd wanted to be asked, he shouldn't have gone to sleep, should he?") Begin reading at the table of contents, where elaborate titles and subtitles provide clues about the famous figures Bridget will encounter. "The Dirty Little Coward that Shot Mr. Howard; or, Such Stuff as Dreams are Made On" is straightforward--but what a shock to learn who really shot Jesse James. In "The Jersey Lily; or, Make Me Immortal with a Kiss," Lillie Langtry and Bridget discover common bonds, including beloved little "nieces" being raised by others. Not all the stories are merry ones: "Parties Unknown by the Jury" is an account of lynchings; "The Father of the Bride" tells a little-remembered tragedy in the life of President Grant. . . .the final word on Bridget is that she's full of verve, meets fascinating people, and we hope to encounter her often again.
The Drood Review of Mystery