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The Spellmans Strike Again (The Spellmans #4)

4.2 of 5 stars 4.20  ·  rating details  ·  8,534 ratings  ·  804 reviews
At the ripe old age of thirty-two, former wild child Isabel "Izzy" Spellman has finally agreed to take over the family business. And the transition won't be a smooth one. First among her priorities as head of Spellman Investigations is to dig up some dirt on the competition, slippery ex-cop Rick Harkey--a task she may enjoy a little too much. Next, faced with a baffling mi ...more
Kindle Edition, 404 pages
Published by Simon & Schuster (first published March 1st 2010)
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I heart The Spellman Files books and have been completely enamored since book one. I make no apologies for giving this fourth book in the series five enthusiastic stars because I pretty much think anything Lisa Lutz writes is pure genius. For some reason, her writing style really clicks with me.

This book, like its predecessors, was witty, hilarious, clever, and managed to have great relationships without getting sappy or sloppy. The mystery of the book is always a nice twist, but I always feel
Kate Coombs
Have you ever shared a book you really loved with a friend because you thought they were the right personality/mind to appreciate it, and you were thinking, They'd better like it, because it's SO, SO GOOD!? Yeah, me too.

I opened my door a few minutes ago to just such a friend, to whom I had loaned all four of Lisa Lutz's Spellman books. My highly educated, articulate neighbor stood on the front porch sort of stammering. I will try to recreate approximately what she said: "I, I just LOVE the Spel
Alisha Marie
I'm going to start off by saying that I love books. I mean all types of books (maybe except for romance, but that's a whole other topic). Every once in a while you will read a book that will just be like nothing you ever read before. A book which you will herald as your favorite literary masterpiece. The types of books that when you tell your friends you read it, they will look at you in amazement and say "Wait, you didn't just read it, but you actually enjoyed it? You complete and utter freak!" ...more
Paula  Phillips
If you are like me and love light-hearted and fun mystery novels, then Lisa Lutz's series "The Spellman Files" are definitely books that should be found in your dark alleys of the reader's corner. According to other reviewers, if you like Janet Evanovich's Stephanie Plum series then this is something similar , for me I'm just starting on the Stephanie Plum books as I got Book #1 One for Money out of the library. The Spellman family consist of Olivia and Albert Spellman (Mum and Dad) , Children - ...more
Lisa Lutz first introduced Isabel Spellman and lunatic-ridden family in her 2007 debut novel The Spellman Files. The Spellmans run a family-owned private investigation agency in San Francisco, but they are far from your typical small family business owners. They are each other's worst nightmare. In fact, they spend almost as much time spying on one another as they spend conducting investigations for paying customers. Izzy, the narrator, is the thirty-something middle child who never grew up -- o ...more
In San Francisco, thirtyish Isabel Spellman knows the family rules rule having broken all of them at one time or another, but now she grooms herself to take over Spellman Investigations from her retiring parents Albert and Olivia. Her older brother David is downsized corporate America lawyer and her other sibling is simply Rae, no description necessary beyond she is seventeen.

Currently, in spite of the DNA, Isabel learns one rule of private sleuthing is tediousness. Accompanied by her friend Le
Tim Chamberlain
Written for the KAZI Book Review (

Anyone with a taste for fast-paced, funny fiction with an authentic feel will enjoy Lisa Lutz’s latest novel, The Spellmans Strike Back.

For anyone not acquainted with the Spellmans, they are a dysfunctional family of San Francisco PIs that are as likely to be spying on each other as they are to be on a paying job. The novel is set up as a “document” written by Isabel Spellman, the thirty-something middle child of the Spellma
I love the Spellmans. Why I can't get more people on board with this series, I don't know....Maybe it is because when I tell people about these books, our main character Izzy doesn't sound too good - immature, interfering, drinks too much, has been arrested and jailed several times, spies on her nearest and dearest, thinks of her romantic interests as "current ex-boyfriends", and her best friend is an octogenarian.

Yet she is oddly endearing. First of all, her and her quirky family members are l
Lisa Vegan
Apr 03, 2010 Lisa Vegan rated it 5 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: those with a warped sense of humor who love to laugh (read the first 3 books first!)
I don’t often say this about series books, but this fourth book was the best and most hilarious book of the four, and that says a lot coming from me, as the first three books received 5 stars each from me as well.

This book, more than any other, makes me wish I had a humor shelf at Goodreads, but I don’t want my (1) lifechanging book knocked off my profile page, so humorless I will remain.

Absolutely hilarious. I found myself laughing out loud so many times, sometimes uncontrollably laughing again
I'm just going to say it right out--I'm in love with Lisa Lutz's books about the Spellman family. I enjoyed the first three and Isabel is right--you need to read them in order to enjoy the full flavor of the stories as they unfold. These books are like sitting around the dining table after a family meal and playing the "remember when" game. You can only appreciate each of the characters when you have seen their stories evolve in these hysterical novels. Lisa, in the name of all things holy, keep ...more
Encore une fois un excellent moment.
Je ne résiste pas à cette famille déjantée où tout le monde enquête sur tout le monde, où les uns font du chantage aux autres, où certains font pression et imposent leur idées, où les autres subissent.
Des personnages haut en couleurs, des enquêtes trop bizzares, des situations et des reflexions qui me font toujours autant rire.
Mention spéciale pour les personnages "secondaires" comme Henry, Fred, Maggie et Morty qui sont si différents mais qui ont tous des r
I just love, love, love the Spellman family. They are so witty and weird and fasciniating. I hope this isn't the last in the series and that this author keeps going with it. This wasn't my favorite of the series, but still is great, so it is probably more like 4 stars, but because of the awesome characters it gets 5 :)
Izzy narratives the story as usual. The cast is great. The backstory is again in footnotes so it is easier to follow if you have read the previous books. Izzy is growing up and Rae's antics are no longer funny. Besides Rae Izzy is being blackmailed by her Mother, door knobs and light fixtures in the Spellman house are disappearing, Conner, Bernie and Henry meet up. Morty is returning to San Francisco and Izzy is determined to take down Harkey. I spent a lot of the time reading laughing. I ready ...more
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Apr 16, 2010 Chantale rated it 1 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: no one
The date I 'finished' the book is the day I gave up on it and the series. I got to page 116. Revenge of the Spellmans was bad, Curse of the Spellmans was worse, this book is terrible. This series is declining.

The format for the second title in the series changed and it was awful, they changed it a little in the next titles but the first book was the best for format, plot, characterization. How sad, this series had such potential.

The reference to previous 'documents' (Spellman books) gets annoy
In this fourth and final installment in the Spellman series, Izzy Spellman is right smack in the middle of some of her wackiest adventures yet. Because her mom still holds Prom Night 1994 over her she has to agree to go on 20 blind dates with a different lawyer each time. This is because her mom cannot stand her dating Connor, otherwise known as ex-boyfriend #12. Her best friend Morty calls weekly from Florida with nothing but gripes. One of her cases involves her hiring her good friend Len, to ...more
Izzy is now 32, which according to everyone else, means she is an adult, and should probably start acting like one. So, she finally agrees to take over the family business.

This means that she has to buy some grown-up clothes so that she can meet with clients, like the eccentric millionaire Franklin Winslow, whose butler is missing.

But mostly, it's business as usual in her life. Her mother is trying to break up the relationship between Izzy and her Irish bartender boyfriend.

Her younger sister,
I was looking for books that were on the lighter side to read over the holidays and this was perfect. I read the first two books in the series a couple years ago (The Spellman Files and Curse of the Spellmans). Now over the past few weeks, I finished the third book (Revenge of the Spellmans) and this one, the last in the series. They are so HILARIOUS. Many times I was laughing out loud. The Spellmans are a family of Private Investigators who seem to spend more time spying on eachother than worki ...more
Elizabeth (Miss Eliza)
Review to come! Also I don't want it over! (Though great ending)

The Spellman Clan is no longer at war... they are now bonding... there have already been two camping trips... in fact an all out family brawl might improve the situation and stop the exposure to the great outdoors and what passes for food at the Sunday night dinners... But work continues apace and aside from the fact, that with her boyfriend Connor's grudging acquiescence, Izzy is dating lawyers to keep her mom quite about an incide
CJ - So, you wanna play with magic?
I absolutely adore the Spellman's. I do. In another world I could be a less criminal Izzy. I guess what I'm saying is that I can relate to her, though her actions are a little more self-destructive than mine. However, she is learning and growing and yet, still as hilariously irreverent as per usual.

This book, though it is regrettably the last, ended on just the right note. As with every Spellman ending there is a some sweet with the bitter and while there is no happily ever after for everything,
Argh, just spent ages typing in a review... And the mobile app of goodreads ignored it and now it's gone!

Ok, new (worse) attempt:

In this 4th installment of the Spellmans, everything comes together perfectly--writing, plot, characters, etc. Which is why I was so horrified to read on goodreads that this is the last book in the series.

The Spellman books are hard to fit into current genre definitions. They're sort of mysteries, but written like screenplays (no surprise that the 1st book has been opt
I started this book at about 1 am this morning and finished it at 3:30 am. I loved it. The book is amazing. It's funny and irreverent, yet serious at the same time. Isabel is in fine form and you can tell in this book that she's really grown into herself and started becoming an "adult."

Frankly, I think Lisa Lutz is getting better with every book she writes, and while I'm sure I'll be blown away by the latest Spellman book, I do hope she keeps writing them. *SPOILER* I love Morty. The relationsh

I feel like I should crack a beer and toast a friend that is leaving me. That's how profoundly sad it makes me to think that this book is the last in the series. I have laughed until I cried or my husband hit in the face with a pillow and told me to shut-up with some of her narrative and adventures with Isabelle Spellman. I wanted to be a part of the dyfuntional family meals and go to the bar with her.

Obviously this isn't deep reading material. You can see that from all of the other reviews. But
Brenda Mengeling
A delight to read! The Spellman series by Lisa Lutz really needs to be read in order, as each book builds upon and references the previous. So many issues resolve for Izzy Spellman in this "Document #4" that I originally thought this might be the end of the series. But then again, it could also be the beginning of a beautiful new friendship...

My favorite aspect of Lutz's writing is the seemingly random/crazy plotting that all ties up together in the end in a way that satisfies. Lutz writes with
❂ Jennifer (reviews on BookLikes)
This is my review after reading this book for the second time. This is a great series and this one might be my favourite of the four so far. As funny as the family is, it's nice to see a few of them get put in their place, and it's great to see Izzy evolve. I love the footnotes, and there are quite a few laugh-out-loud moments. It's not a typical mystery, with one major plot, but this one has many smaller plots running in parallel and I thought they were all handled really well. I'm really looki ...more
Okay. Maybe the earlier books are better.

The writing was okay and the author keeps the narrative moving through mutiple story lines, but not much happens in any of them. Some of the characters are funny some are not. (I am sorry, but her sister Rae is on of the most obnoxious characters in any mystery I have ever read. In a Carl Hiassen novel, this is the type of character who ends up getting eaten by a killer whale or marooned on island in the Everglades!!)

Overall this read like a less well c
Destinee Sutton
I'm sad to see the Spellman saga come to an end. So sad that I actually teared up a little in the final pages. Seriously! I also realized today that I read each and every one of the four books in one sitting because they're so fun and paced so well.

I hope Lisa Lutz writes more books.

But if she doesn't, at least I know Isabel and her family will always live in my heart, and in the similarities I see in my own crazy family, none of whom are detectives, but they still manage to be nosy (myself in
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
I will always love the Spellmans, but this one was not as well-plotted and laugh-out-loud as the previous three books. Nevertheless, I wore a smile on my face through the latest adventures of my favorite dysfunction family. If there are more Spellman books, I think I'd like to see the focus switch to Rae. Recommended for fans of the series. While the necessary details of previous books are shared through Isabel's narration, the book doesn't work as a stand-alone story. Read the other books first ...more
This was fun and I'm glad one of those loose ends got tied up the way it did at the end of this series, but I'm writing this 6 hours after I finished the book, and I can barely remember the plot, much less distinguish it from the other ones in the series. Part of me would like to see at least one more of these, with a little permanent growth on the part of the narrator, and part of me feels like this is a real place to end this series.
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I can't wait for the next one! 9 50 May 26, 2013 02:50PM  
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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 about Lisa Lutz...

Other Books in the Series

The Spellmans (6 books)
  • The Spellman Files (The Spellmans, #1)
  • Curse of the Spellmans (The Spellmans, #2)
  • Revenge of the Spellmans (The Spellmans, #3)
  • Trail of the Spellmans (The Spellmans, #5)
  • The Last Word (The Spellmans, #6)
The Spellman Files (The Spellmans, #1) Revenge of the Spellmans (The Spellmans, #3) Curse of the Spellmans (The Spellmans, #2) Trail of the Spellmans (The Spellmans, #5) The Last Word (The Spellmans, #6)

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