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Nancy Atherton

Author of Aunt Dimity's Death

30+ Works 11,374 Members 304 Reviews 30 Favorited

About the Author

Nancy Atherton is the author of the popular Aunt Dimity mysteries. The bestselling series describes the humorous adventures of Lori Shepherd and her family, who reside in the English countryside. The Independent Mystery Booksellers Association voted Atherton's first book, Aunt Dimity's Death, as show more "One of the Century's 100 Favorite Mysteries." The author resides in Colorado Springs, Colorado and has visited England many times. (Bowker Author Biography) show less

Includes the names: Nancy Atherton, Nanacy Atherton


Works by Nancy Atherton

Associated Works


2013 (34) adult (62) Atherton (53) Aunt Dimity (701) Aunt Dimity Mystery series (32) Aunt Dimity series (72) British (106) British mystery (52) contemporary (56) cozy (551) cozy mysteries (34) cozy mystery (465) crime fiction (55) dimity (92) ebook (39) England (525) fantasy (86) fiction (843) finished (45) ghosts (422) goodreads (49) hardcover (45) Kindle (47) library (114) Lori Shepherd (135) mysteries (86) mystery (2,492) mystery fiction (71) mystery series (59) Nancy Atherton (97) novel (65) own (93) paperback (44) paranormal (318) paranormal mystery (96) PB (44) read (193) series (224) supernatural (138) to-read (371)

Common Knowledge

20th Century
Places of residence
Colorado Springs, Colorado, USA
Short biography
Nancy Atherton is a dark-haired American with a generally unwrinkled face, a beaming smile, and and hazel eyes, who lives in a plain house in Colorado Springs. She comes from a large, gregarious family (five brothers and two sisters!) and enjoys socializing as much as she enjoys solitude.



Lori befriends a terminally ill woman called Lizzie. After Lizzie’s death, Lori discovers there was more to Lizzie than met the eye, and Lori finds herself on a quest to find Lizzie’s mysteriously absent brother.

This book is notable for the fact that the mystery does not involve a murder which is quite a refreshing change of pace.

It was an ok read—not terrible, but not particularly good either. I doubt I will read any more of the Aunt Dimity series. The Aunt Dimity ghost character seems superfluous.… (more)
missterrienation | 15 other reviews | Oct 5, 2023 |
Did your parent, grandparent, or an imaginative older sibling or babysitter tell you stories about a character they invented just for your amusement?

Imagine your shock, and maybe fear, if long after your trusted storyteller’s death, a stranger were to contact you out of nowhere to discuss the character whose exploits were whispered to you, and only you, as you lay safe in your bed.

This is exactly what happened to Lori Shepherd in this first installment of the Aunt Dimity Mysteries. It’s an original and striking concept, and I looked forward to a cozy read that was equally enthralling right up to the end. I anticipated more revelations as the gift of Aunt Dimity was slowly unwrapped.

Instead of a slow reveal though, the wrapping paper is ripped off in one hasty gesture. Granted, there are more secrets to be discovered, but the mystery was over for me after that first big spoiler. (Because I want this review to be spoiler-free, I’m being purposely vague.) Still, the puzzle is complex and the prose style is tight, with flashes of humor. I enjoyed most of the book.

You might enjoy it too, especially if you happen to be a fan of Barbara Michaels’ mid-century gothic mystery/horror novels. The main characters are so similar to Michaels’ heroines and love interests that if I didn’t know better I’d think she wrote the book.
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CatherineB61 | 68 other reviews | May 31, 2023 |
Let's just start by writing that I love this book. The mystery is more of a behind-the-scenes story compared to the discovery of the characters' true selves. This book chronologically predates the first book in the series, Aunt Dimity's Death, but you don't have to read that one before this one. I love that the main female character isn't young, fashionably slim, and beautiful. She's in her 40s, a bit frumpy, and an avid gardener. She's also recovering after being dumped by her longtime lover.

There was a good amount of musing about marriage that I enjoyed, but mostly I loved watching the characters grow. The mystery was solved, and I was pleased with the results.

I highly recommend this book for fans of cozy mysteries.
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Jean_Sexton | 24 other reviews | Oct 8, 2022 |
Aunt Dimity and the Enchanted Cottage by Nancy Atherton is a 2022 Viking Books publication.

Endearing as always!

In this installment in the Aunt Dimity series is centered around a new resident in the Cotswold community of Finch. Everyone turns out to spy of the new neighbor- Mr. Windle- but find themselves frustrated that his belongings are few and he seems intent on keeping himself to himself. Unfortunately, Lori and Tommy draw an alarming conclusion about Mr. Windle and decide to forgo the usual Finch protocol and give the gentleman a call.

In the process they discover the ruins of an old Victorian mill, once a primary source of income for Finch. Meanwhile Bree and Tommy suffer a setback and Lori continues to speculate and investigate Mr. Windle, hoping to discover the source of his sadness, giving in to preconceived notions, and straight up nosiness while she seeks advice from Aunt Dimity.

As always, the setting and the residents of Finch makes the story charming and often humorous. While all these short cozies are very gentle, there’s depth here too. In this case, a piece of forgotten history has been brought to light, which was certainly sobering and thought-provoking.

I have read this series off and on for a long while. I haven’t read every installment, but, honestly, you can pop in and out of Finch without having too much trouble catching up- and you can always go back later and catch up on previous installments for a wider picture. (Someday, I'm going to make a point of reading the installments I skipped)

The premise, which is cozy, (but, never a murder mystery), though, never deviates too far off course, and there is a certain comfort in that. I like the dependability, the quirky, but delightful characters, and of course the location is a calming, escape.

This series has a refreshing effect on me, and I’m always glad I took a little detour into Finch and look forward to my next visit there.

4 stars
… (more)
gpangel | 2 other reviews | Jul 4, 2022 |



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Associated Authors

Jerry Lofaro Cover artist, Illustrator
Meredith Harte Cover designer
Christine Naegele Translator, Übersetzer
Monika Köpfer Übersetzer
Merideth Harte Cover designer


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