Goodreads helps you keep track of books you want to read.
Start by marking “Trail of the Spellmans (The Spellmans, #5)” as Want to Read:
Trail of the Spellmans (The Spellmans, #5)
Enlarge cover
Rate this book
Clear rating
Open Preview

Trail of the Spellmans (The Spellmans #5)

by
3.99 of 5 stars 3.99  ·  rating details  ·  5,472 ratings  ·  879 reviews
The fifth installment in the New York Times bestselling series by Lisa Lutz, featuring the fearless private investigator Izzy Spellman and her quirky, yet endearing, family of sleuths.

For the first time in Spellman history, Isabel Spellman might be the most normal member of her family. Mom has taken on an outrageous assortment of extracurricular activities. Dad has a secre...more
Hardcover, 384 pages
Published February 28th 2012 by Simon & Schuster
more details... edit details

Friend Reviews

To see what your friends thought of this book, please sign up.

Reader Q&A

To ask other readers questions about Trail of the Spellmans, please sign up.

Be the first to ask a question about Trail of the Spellmans

City of Lost Souls by Cassandra ClareNevermore by James PattersonOut of Sight, Out of Time by Ally CarterInsurgent by Veronica RothReached by Ally Condie
Anticipated Books of 2012
92nd out of 559 books — 1,050 voters
Insurgent by Veronica RothCity of Lost Souls by Cassandra ClareDeadlocked by Charlaine HarrisReached by Ally CondiePandemonium by Lauren Oliver
Can't Wait Books of 2012
476th out of 2,507 books — 15,921 voters


More lists with this book...

Community Reviews

(showing 1-30 of 3,000)
filter  |  sort: default (?)  |  rating details
Jennifer
I gave the first 4 books 5-stars but this gets 3-stars. And I'm not only rating this on the incredibly upsetting event. Although that was ridiculously awful! I didn't read four books where I felt like I was climbing Mt. Everest to only barely reach the top in the fifth book and then be thrown off the cliff before I can even take a look around! I was also very disappointed by all the characters. No Henry/Rae scenes. No Henry anything basically! His character was wasted in this installment. There...more
Carol. [All cynic, all the time]
Feb 02, 2014 Carol. [All cynic, all the time] rated it 4 of 5 stars
Recommends it for: people who want a light, fun mystery
Sometimes you just need light and fluffy. Lutz’ Spellman series fits the bill perfectly, with enough complexity and surprises to prevent boredom, clever lines to provide laughter and a remarkable entertaining heroine.

In this installment, Isabel is active again in her family’s detective business. Her younger sister Rae is off at college at Berkley, but still takes a hand in a case or two. Rae mostly seems to come around to work on convincing Spellman Investigations’ newest employee, Demetrius, to...more
Melki
My family's obligatory Sunday-night dinners have always had the atmosphere of a disappointing baseball game: lots of shouting, subpar and semidigestible dining options, and various individuals occasionally making a run for it.

Isabel Spellman


Here's the latest go-round from that wacky family of private investigators known as the Spellmans.

All the current cases seem rather mundane compared to the theatrics of Izzy's own family. Mom has overscheduled herself to the point of exhaustion with classes...more
Shelley aka Gizmo's Reviews
*Rating* 4.0
*Genre* Mystery/Comedy

*Review forthcoming*

I seriously love this series! I am so happy that after a nearly 2 years of a reprieve from writing this series, Trail of the Spellman's returns without any luster being lost on the characters or the storyline itself.

More shortly.
RachelAnne
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Naomi
I have that deep fear concerning the survivability of the Spellman clan and I hope LL wasn't trying to tell us something. I loved this book..it was LL typical high standard of writing with a ton of questions at the end!
Stacy Curry
REALLY we have to wait a whole year!! I love the Spellmans....
Trick Brown
Clearly, if I am reading the fifth book in any series it's because I thoroughly enjoy the series. What first attracted me to these stories was the originality in their presentation. Ms. Lutz uses a number of interesting, call them gimmicks, to present the story. Not as much for this novel, but she has often utilized in media res techniques as a way to foreshadow. Since the Spellman's are private investigators, she presents scenes as transcripts of recorded conversations. Which creates an interes...more
Lisa Vegan
This is the 5th book in the Spellman series, all 5 star books for me, most of them (why not all?!: Do I have to rectify that?!) on my favorites shelf. (I assigned 5 stars for Lutz’s standalone book too.) (And, there is a new children’s book that will be out in 2013, and readers of this book get a teaser about it, illustrations included.)

I literally laughed out loud, numerous times. The story is hilarious, delightful, and a perfect comfort read for me, warped sense of humor that I have.

The relati...more
Joey
Have you ever had a craving for your favorite treat? All day long you've looked forward to indulging in it and when you finally sit down to eat it, it doesn't taste right. Like someone has made it sugar free, carb free, and taken the chocolate bits out. Yep , that's this book. As a huge fan of her superb series, books 1-4 that is, I was seriously disappointed with her latest installment in a series that really should just have been left finished.

Her usual zany cast of characters were made to see...more
Victoria
This is one of the most fun, laugh-out-loud series that I have ever read. After the fourth installment, The Spellmans Strike Again, I had believed Internet rumours that said it would be the last Spellman book, so my delight was tremendous when I first heard about this book's imminent publication (and don't worry, this time the Internet is very upfront that an additional two books have been contracted in the series!)

I love Lutz's writing style and sense of humour - in fact, I first read The Spell...more
Jess Schira
After reading the Trail of the Spellmans I can't shake the feeling that Lutz planned on ending the series with her fourth (the previous) novel. She'd tied up the loose ends and made it seem like the family had worked through all of their problems. With this book she kind of through a grenade in the middle of life and waited to see where the carnage ended. This book didn't have any of the crazy antics I enjoyed in the earlier novels, and the whole book felt ... forced. Worse of all, the most of t...more
Amy
I am so upset I want to cry. I'm not even finishing this book unless a sixth book comes out to rectify things. Why did I pick this up? I loved this series and told everyone I know about it. Now I'm going to tell them that book 4 is the last in the series. Seriously, I need a forget spell. I would like to understand why all the characters get to grow and be happy except Izzy. Resist the suspense if you know what is good for you and do not read this. You can then remain in the previously inhabited...more
Jess
I don't know. Maybe I'm over it. I liked it. I liked revisiting the characters, and the story stayed true to all of them. Still, you know when you see a sequel to a movie that had a very satisfactory ending, and the sequel is fine but you can't help but wonder if it was really necessary? This was like that.
Noah W
Nov 26, 2012 Noah W rated it 3 of 5 stars
Shelves: 2012
Lisa Lutz typically records the crazy, but plausible antics of the Spellmans. This file contains the realistic, very plausible musings of a tired investigator. In many ways the Spellmans have matured.

So I'll address how each of the characters have changed (matured):

Albert Spellman (Father): In this book he mainly does paperwork and runs the compnay like a normal boss. No more "retirement age crisis" or interesting hobbies.

Olivia Spellman (Mother): She no longer is obsessed with playing Yenta th...more
Theresa
Releasing March 2012.
Paula  Phillips
This is a series that I have really enjoyed for a long time now as each book provides not only the factor of mystery and intrigue , suspense and the occasional thrill as well as lighthearted humour. In Book #5 we discover that the oldest brother David has undergone a completely new transformation from sharp lawyer to stay-at-home dad and Rae is still dealing in her money-making ventures , Izzy is still continously getting into trouble with her parents but has she pushed it too far when her dad d...more
Paul Pessolano
“Trail of the Spellmans” by Lisa Lutz, published by Simon & Schuster.

Category – Mystery/Comedy

Just as Lays Potato Chips says, “You can’t eat just one”, Lisa Lutz has a series that, “You can’t read just one”.

The Spellman Detective Agency continues on its merry way in “Trail of the Spellmans”. This is the fifth book in the series and they must be read in order to get the most out of them.

The Spellmans I’m sure most of you know are a family of Private Investigators that mainly do surveillance w...more
Cindy Crawford
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Alisha Marie
I had mixed emotions when I found out that there was going to be a fifth document in the Spellman series and I literally didn't know until I opened up my Amazon Vine newsletter (I know, I know, "Shame on you!" and "Bad fan!"). At first I was thinking "Seriously?! Yayyyyy!!!!", but then I started thinking about how much I loved the fourth book and how I thought that it had such a satisfactory ending. Plus, I had sort of put The Spellman series to bed, gave them a "Rest in Peace", mourned for them...more
Amy
ARC/TPB/Mystery: Rarely does a character come alone that I really miss after I've finished the book (Abby Normal & Stephanie Plum). I really like Izzy; she's like my friend and she's telling me her life story.
I've listened to Spellman's 1 & 2 and when I saw Book 5 on Amazon Vine, I bit the bullet and skipped over. I don't think skipping is going to be a problem. First, the books stand on their own because it is a mystery. Second, even though I know facts now that have happened in books 3...more
Dorothy
I've been reading really serious literature recently and I decided that I needed a bit of fluff to clear my reading palate. It doesn't get much fluffier than Lisa Lutz and her family of ditsy San Francisco detectives, the Spellmans.

This is the fifth in the Spellman series. Several years have passed in the family's history since the series began, and yet it is hard to see much growth in most of the family members. They still spend more time surveilling each other, trying to trip each other up, an...more
Book Him Danno
The overwhelming thought I had as I read this book was Rory and Lorelei had decided to solve crimes. The dialogue was so fast, so snappy it reminded of the Gilmore Girls interacting at the diner. Thank goodness it was written down or I would have had to keep rewinding to keep up.

This is about a family, the Spellmans, more so than the crimes the dig into.
They are private detectives who all work together in a nonstop atmosphere of love and suspicion, like any good family who are also paid to be...more
Tabi34
Ahhh...the next installment of Izzy Spellman and her dysfunctional family/life. If you remember in book 4 she had moved in with Ex boyfriend #13 (she always calls them that from the start) and was in going to take over the family PI business.

Book 5 opens with her still living with Ex #13. Her brother David who married Maggie at the end of book 4 is now a stay at home dad to 18 month old Sydney. He has morphed into New David, a guy who doesn't care about money or his appearance. In fact he isn't...more
Tim Chamberlain
Written for the KAZI Book Review (http://kazibookreview.wordpress.com/):

The further adventures of a wonderfully dysfunctional PI and her entire dysfunctional clan.

With Trail of the Spellmans, the fifth book in the Spellmans series, Lisa Lutz delivers a fast and funny mystery that should please old and new fans alike.

The new installment follows the further adventures of Isabel “Izzy” Spellman (a San Francisco private investigator) and her family who just so happen to be her co-workers. There is n...more
Jennifer
This is the fifth book in the Spellman series but only the second Spellman book I read. (I read #1 and then jumped to this one.) I thought Lutz smoothed out her writing style in the interval (the first book felt a bit disjointed). If you’re not familiar with the series, the Spellmans are a San Francisco-based family who own a private investigation business run by the Spellman parents and employing Isabel (our narrator) and sometimes Rae (the youngest daughter—in college in this book). The focus...more
Lighthearted
The Spellmans are back! As dysfunctional and secretive as ever, they now have new nicknames for each other as well as Code Phrases for meeting clients. The Eagle (Izzy’s mom) has inexplicably decided to take on a number of new hobbies, none of which she actually shows any interest in. The Tortoise (Izzy’s dad) has a secret. The Weasel (Rae) and David (nickname pending) aren’t speaking to each other and refuse to tell anyone what happened. The Gopher (Izzy) is determined to avoid having “the talk...more
Susan Johnson
I really like the Spellman family and their private investigation business. I like how they spy on each other. I like how they bring others into their loop especially Henry. Izzy has been living with Henry for about two years when this book starts. If you remember, Izzy's sister, Rae, had a major crush on him (she was around 12) and followed him everywhere. That's how Izzy met him. Izzy is living the most normal life in her family which is highly unusual. Izzy's mom has taken on a boat load of h...more
Andrea Mullarkey
Lisa Lutz is back with the Spellman crew. Everyone is a little older and remarkably some of them are even a little more grown up! In Trail of the Spellmans Rae is a freshman in college, Demetrius Merriweather is a regular employee in the family business, Isabel is still working as an investigator while dating Harry Stone and David and wife Maggie have a daughter Sydney who won’t stop saying the word “banana.” Of course Dad has a secret, Rae has a secret, David has a secret, Isabel has a secret,...more
Dana
The more distance I get from this one, the more I like it. 3 1/2 stars if I could do it, so since I'm feeling generous, I'll round up to 4.

The immediate reaction was kind of "meh." Trial of the Spellmans has a different sort of feel than the previous volumes of the series. There's still plenty of humor, and the Spellman clan as a whole is still rather insane and dysfunctional. But Izzy. Oh, Izzy. She still has that bulldog tenacnity that tends to get her in trouble. But Izzy is growing up, and s...more
« previous 1 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 99 100 next »
topics  posts  views  last activity   
ENDING! *Spoilers* 51 222 Aug 28, 2013 01:38PM  
  • A Fistful of Collars (A Chet and Bernie Mystery #5)
  • I Am Half-Sick of Shadows (Flavia De Luce, #4)
  • Gem of a Ghost (A Ghost of Granny Apples Mystery, #3)
  • A Bad Day for Scandal (Bad Day, #3)
  • Lethal Outlook (Psychic Eye Mystery, #10)
  • A Date You Can't Refuse
  • 5 Bodies to Die For (Body Movers, #5)
  • The Girl Next Door (Carter Ross, #3)
  • Royal Blood (Her Royal Spyness Mysteries, #4)
  • A Fitting End (A Magical Dressmaking Mystery #2)
  • Swift Justice (A Charlie Swift Mystery #1)
  • The Dark Enquiry (Lady Julia, #5)
  • Gator A-Go-Go (Serge Storms, #12)
  • The Little Sleep
  • Bubbles Ablaze (Bubbles Yablonsky, #3)
  • Old Haunts (A Haunted Guesthouse Mystery, #3)
  • Dutch Me Deadly (Passport to Peril, #7)
  • We'll Always Have Parrots (Meg Langslow, #5)
74189
Lisa Lutz grew up in Southern California. After graduating high school, she attended UC Santa Cruz, UC Irvine, University of Leeds in England and San Francisco State University, although she still does not have a bachelor's degree.

Lisa spent most of the 1990s hopping from a string of low-paying odd jobs while writing and rewriting a mob comedy called Plan B. After it was made in 2000, Lisa vowed s...more
More about Lisa Lutz...
The Spellman Files (The Spellmans, #1) Revenge of the Spellmans (The Spellmans, #3) Curse of the Spellmans (The Spellmans, #2) The Spellmans Strike Again (The Spellmans, #4) The Last Word (The Spellmans, #6)

Share This Book

“You know what I'm thinking?' Maggie said.
I had no idea.
'Nope,' David replied. Apparently David didn't know either.
Maggie turned to me with pleading eyes.'Our babysitter has the flu.'
'I'm sorry to hear that,' I replied.
Dead silence.
I honestly had no idea what Maggie was getting at, so I misread the silence.
'It's not serious, I hope,' I said sympathetically.”
6 likes
“I don't have any kids, so I'm not as worried about my heirs as the rest of you, but still: I think the youth of tomorrow might be better off if they knew the physical sensation of cracking a spine and turning the page.” 5 likes
More quotes…