The final novel by the legendary Ellery Queen, A Fine and Private Place ranks with Queen's incomparable best.
The nine-word clue was one of nine cryptic notes that had been sent to taunt Inspector Queen and his son Ellery nine days after the murder. Nino Importuna had been obsessed with the number. He had lived by it. Now the killer who brought a trio of gory deaths to Nino's ninth-floor penthouse at Number 99 East wascamouflaging his identity in a jungle of nines - and daring Ellery to find him. The case was destined to be a dazzling contest of wits - to the ninth degree!
This was an odd one. Really, really good in some aspects. Not so in others. It almost seemed like a throwback to the early Queen books, in that the PUZZLE is the main attraction to the story. And what a puzzle. A murder where 9s show up everywhere! Even the murder weapon resembled a nine. The trouble comes with the actual solution. Since there are so few characters (and most of them have been killed!) it's not hard to figure out the murderer. Hell, flip a coin! This isn't so much a whodunit as a "find the clue" mystery.