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Queens Full (1965)

Foster Benedict, aging matinee idol, was doing the lead in the Wrightsville production of The Death of Don Juan. He didn't like playing the sticks, and he was sabotaging the performance, turning it into a farce...
"If I get my hands on him," screamed the amateur producer, "I'll..." But it was too late. When the curtain rose on the second act, Benedict was dead.
There were plenty of suspects--it seemed Foster Benedict had upstaged everyone in town. Ellery Queen's job was a little like a casting director's--there was plenty of talent, but no one was right for the part of killer!

It was "murder, murder most foul...."
Foster Benedict, his back to the door, was in the chair at the dressing table, half lying among the wigs and make-up boxes.
He was partly dressed in a Don Juan costume. The shirt was of flowing white silk and just below the left shoulder blade, from the apex of a red ragged stain, the handle of a knife protruded... He was dead Don --.
And the cast, the crew, and everyone in the audience was suspect!

  • "The Death of Don Juan" (Argosy, 5/62 reprinted in EQMM, 8/64)
  • "The Wrightsville Heirs" (Better Living, 1/56 & 2/56 reprinted in EQMM, 11/57)
  • "The Case Against Carroll" (Argosy, 8/58 reprinted in Suspense 04/59 and in EQMM, 9/60)
  • "E = Murder" (This Week, 8/14/60 reprinted in EQMM, 5/61)
  • "Diamonds in Paradise" (EQMM, 9/54)

Queens Full - HB DJ BCE cover 1965Queens Full - coverQueens Full - coverQueens Full - cover Gollancz Edition, 1966Queens Full - cover
Queens Full - cover Ballantine 24666, December 1975.Queen's Full - cover Penguin edition,1971
Queens Full - cover Road, July 28, 2015Queens Full - cover audiobook Blackstone Audio, Inc., read by Traber Burns, December1. 2015

3 novelettes and 2 short stories, well-done with appropriately clear logic. The opening story, a Wrightsville vignette with another dying clue, is probably the best of the bunch. "The Case against Caroll" having Ellery in doubt again but providing a clear surprising ending.
Anthony Boucher claimed "The Death of Don Juan" to be "a prime specimen of the true whodunit, complete with baffling clues and faultless amateur detection".

Drawing Argosy 5/62 for "The Death of Don Juan"
Above: Drawing Argosy 5/62 for "The Death of Don Juan"

La mort de Don Juan - coverMortissimo - cover German edition Ullstein Krimi 4 stories, 1968Le avventure di Ellery Queen - cover Italian edition, series  'I racconti di', N°6La Morte Di Don Juan - cover Italian edition I Classici Del Giallo MondadoriΟ θάνατος του δον Ζουάν - cover Greek edition (The Death of Don Juan), 1960s (?)Matinja Don Juan - cover Indonesian edition of The Death of Don Juan, Editions Penerbit - P.Y.Kinta, Djakarta
Some stories from Queens Full - Cover Russian edition, 2007 (also contains The Tragedy of X)Some stories from Queens Full - Cover Russian edition, 2007 (also includes The Tragedy of Y)Queen's Full - cover Japanese edition, Hayakawa Pocket Mystery BookQueen's Full - cover Japanese edition, Hayakawa Publishing (full cover), 1995Full de reinas - Cover Spanish edition, Mexico, Colleccion Caiman °376, 1966مرگ دون ژوان  - cover Persian edition "Queens Full", by هزار افسان, in  2005

Queens Full Translations:
Dutch/Flemish: none 
French: Le mort de Don Juan 
German: Mortissimo 
Grieks: Ο θάνατος του δον Ζουάν 
Indonesian: Matinja Don Juan 
Italian: Full di Queen (aka La Morte Di Don Juan) 
Persisch: مرگ دون ژوان  
Spanish: Full de reinas

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Other articles on this book

(1) Reading Ellery Queen - Diamonds in Paradise Jon Mathewson
(2) Reading Ellery Queen - The Wrightville Heirs Jon Mathewson
(3) Reading Ellery Queen - The Case against Caroll Jon Mathewson
(4) Reading Ellery Queen - The Death of Don Juan Jon Mathewson
(5) Reading Ellery Queen - E=Murder Jon Mathewson
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