Staceyinastoria (staceyinastoria) wrote in bookish,

Book 21. Revenge of the Spellmans by Lisa Lutz

Title: Revenge of the Spellmans
Author: Lisa Lutz

Genre: Fiction

Pages: 375

Read before?  No
Rating:  8.0 out of 10

Next book: The Dresden Files Rpg Volume 1


Summary:  Private investigator Isabel Spellman is back on the case and back on the couch -- in court-ordered therapy after getting a little too close to her previous subject.


Izzy is on hiatus from Spellman Inc. But when her boss, Milo, simultaneously cuts her bartending hours and introduces her to a "friend" looking for a private eye, Izzy reluctantly finds herself with a new client. She assures herself that the case -- a suspicious husband who wants his wife tailed -- will be short and sweet, and will involve nothing more than the most boring of PI rituals: surveillance. But with each passing hour, Izzy finds herself with more questions than hard evidence.


Meanwhile, Spellmania continues. Izzy's brother, David, the family's most upright member, has adopted an uncharacteristically unkempt appearance and attitude toward work, life, and Izzy. And their wayward youngest sister, Rae, a historic academic underachiever, aces the PSATs and subsequently offends her study partner and object of obsession, Detective Henry Stone, to the point of excommunication. The only unsurprising behavior comes from her parents, whose visits to Milo's bar amount to thinly veiled surveillance and artful attempts (read: blackmail) at getting Izzy to return to the Spellman Inc. fold.

As the case of the wayward wife continues to vex her, Izzy's personal life -- and mental health -- seem to be disintegrating. Facing a housing crisis, she can't sleep, she can't remember where she parked her car, and, despite her shrinks' persistence, she can't seem to break through in her appointments. She certainly can't explain why she forgets dates with her lawyer's grandson, or fails to interpret the come-ons issued in an Irish brogue by Milo's new bartender. Nor can she explain exactly how she feels about Detective Henry Stone and his plans to move in with his new Assistant DA girlfriend...


Why I am reading this.   Third book in series.



My thoughts.  This was the best of the three novels I have read by this author.  Isabel is a riot, and her paranoid behavior sends her into therapy and much more in this next installment.  It is amusing to see her in therapy and trying to avoid answering any meaningful questions.  Having spent her entire life trying to hide things, it is next to impossible for her to open up to someone else. 


Oh and the normal craziness is happening in her family.  Her brother David leaves town and is obviously lying about where he went, her sister Rae scored really high on her PSAT, so everyone thinks she must have found a way to cheat on them, her parents are pressuring Isabel to decided if she wants to run the family business, and her friend Harry (who is best friends with her sister even though he is much older), has cut Rae off and is trying to have an actual relationship with a woman. 


This one actually had a mystery as her friend Milo got her a case of a suspicious husband wondering what his wife is up too.  It was interesting, since Izzy was using this case to determine whether she has what it takes to be an investigator, since she has been a bit obsessive in the past and her judgment was not always where it should be. 


Isabel starts to crack under the strain.  She stops sleeping, has no place to live and moves into her brother’s spare basement apartment, she cannot remember where she parked her car, and is trying to unravel the mysteries.


Isabel is a lovable character, which is interesting considering how flawed she is.  Maybe that is why you love her cuz you know she is trying to do the right thing (or at least her version of the right thing).  She really tries, but it comes out as a huge mess.  Her family is crazy and they all need therapy (which they start at the end of the book). 


Rae is awesome.  She is 16 years old and too clever for her own good.  She has a diet of nothing but sweets, and lives to mess with everyone else.  Has no idea of boundaries and refuses to see anything other than the way she wants too.  Sounds like a lot of 16 year olds. 


Overall, it is a great time and I look forward to reading more.  


Best thing about book. The therapy sessions were priceless. 


Worst thing about book.   Not much, was fun. 




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