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Aunt Dimity and the Duke (An Aunt Dimity Mystery #2)

3.93  ·  Rating Details ·  3,533 Ratings  ·  293 Reviews
Emma Porter is forty, fat, frumpy, and a passionate amateur gardener. When her longtime lover dumps her for a younger woman, Emma escapes the cloying sympathy of family and friends by setting out on a summer-long driving tour of England's glorious gardens. A Dimity-contrived coincidence brings her to Penford Hall, a sprawling Gothic mansion in Cornwall, where she finds a d ...more
Paperback, 290 pages
Published 1995 by Penguin (first published 1994)
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Community Reviews

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Jul 04, 2013 Chibineko rated it really liked it
I have to say that I'm still fairly pleased with the Aunt Dimity series so far, even though the series as a whole fairly surprises me so far. Granted I'm only two books in, but Atherton has broken quite a bit of the regular norms of mystery writing as a whole.

First off, there is no whodunit mystery here. Not really. Just like the first book, this is ultimately about people discovering themselves and each other. It's these interactions that make the discoveries and daily actions so much sweeter.
Feb 01, 2017 Andree rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2017
I enjoyed this. I was a bit all over the map today, and I just wanted a nice story. This satisfied.

So, here is the thing with this series, I read it, and I recognize it's issues, but somehow the books manage to work in spite of their issues.

This book is another spectacular case of insta-love, which it tries to justify through "Dimity knows all, and has vague supernatural powers," BUT. BUT. It's one heck of a case of instalove. Also, I am not sure that Nancy Atherton can write children, at least
Jan 15, 2014 Almeta rated it really liked it
This is a good solid cozy type mystery that is not syrupy or formulaic. (Well the romance is but not the mystery element.) There is also a paranormal element, but it is so unobtrusive, that I was able to pass its appearance off as mere coincidence.

There are some passages which brought me out of the story because of its dated times . For example: The protagonist remarks to herself that it is odd that household staff would be carrying tetherless telephones, affordable only by the rich. (The book w
Jun 03, 2010 Sandy rated it liked it
Recommended to Sandy by: Judie W.
Shelves: fiction-mystery
The second book in the Aunt Dimity series, however in this book Aunt Dimity seemed to be more of an afterthought than a key figure. If I hadn't read the first book, I'd have no idea who Aunt Dimity was. Even having read the first one, I wasn't sure exactly how she fit into this story. I think I liked the first book better. I'm starting the third one in the series and have found connections to the first book and it's characters, which I like.
This book was a fun quick read, but I felt that someti
Sep 08, 2013 Rhode rated it it was ok
Shelves: fiction
2.5 really. I found this book appealing but annoying with annoyance winning in the end. Everybody is so NICE. Everything is so NICE. And then we all sit down to eat scrumptious free food while wearing scrumptious free clothes and chit chat a bit...and then get up and all act nicely again. Even the nasty people are nice.

It's a 4layer cream puff drizzled with chocolate and a hot cup of tea in a scented garden. It is a book for reading when life is grey and you just want some comforting, undemandi
Sep 09, 2010 Denise rated it really liked it
Another quaint mystery by Nancy Atherton. Aunt Dimity has a way of tying a good yarn up in a nice neat magical bow! I can't believe it took me until the Epilogue to recall who Derek and Emma were. This endeared the series to me even more as I reflected back on the part those characters played in the first novel, which actually takes place after "Aunt Dimity and the Duke". I will definitely continue to read more of the series.

This book made me long for the days when I would sit on the floor in t
Barbara ★
I liked the first half of this book but then it just got too confusing and started rambling. Aunt Dimity appears once for a short conversation in the prologue and her name comes up once or twice but other than that she's not in this one. And what happened to Lori? She never makes an appearance nor is she mentioned so I'm not sure how this book actually connects to the series. This is more a romance than anything else. I've only read three books in this series but this is my least favorite. I wil ...more
Nice and light read about a mystery in the English countryside with a 39 year old spinsterish heroine and likeable characters. A perfect book in between when I dont want to overuse my brain for a while... ...more
Feb 14, 2017 Debbie rated it liked it
Shelves: overdrive
Aunt Dimity is a nice light read with a touch of magic stirred in. These books make me smile.
Mar 09, 2017 Sara rated it it was amazing
I love this whole series, but I cannot recommend the audiobooks unless you can find the three narrated by Christina Moore. The other narrator has a very strange style.
Oct 05, 2012 C. rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: up-to-2012
Nancy Atherton débuted in 1993 and by the beauty of used books, I recently discovered "Aunt Dimity's Death". I’m in love with Nancy's originality, impeccable writing, and series that resembles nothing else! Thirty year-old Lori was financially low and her mother had died. When a lawyer's letter came about a Dimity Woodcock's death, she was astonished that fairytales she grew up with, were about her mother's real friend in wartime England. Assisted by the lawyer's son Bill, there's a mission to f ...more
May 31, 2013 Carolynn rated it really liked it
Aunt Dimity has been busy again, in this second volume of the Nancy Atherton English cozy series. Basically it is a cozy, although it is other things, as well...a paranormal, a romance (or two), a mystery, and a just generally feel-good warm-and fuzzy afternoon's pleasure to soothe the frazzled nerves of daily life.

This time a Ms. Emma Porter is drawn into a devious plot by Aunt Dimity to matchmake for an old friend, and bits and pieces of many secrets are exposed then put together, and cups o
May 23, 2008 edifanob rated it it was amazing
Shelves: my-books
Es handelt sich hier um den 2. Band der Tante Dimity Reihe.
Da er jedoch zeitlich vorm dem 1. Band spielt, sollte man ihn zuerst lesen.

Diese Mal verwende ich den Klappentext als Beschreibung, worum es in diesem Buch geht:

"Emma Porter ist vierzig, ziemlich mollig, nicht gerade schick gekleidet und eine leidenschaftliche Gärtnerin. Als ihr langjähriger Lebensgefährte sie wegen einer jüngeren und schlankeren Blondine verlässt, flieht Emma aufs Land. Sie ahnt nicht, dass die geheimnisvolle Tante Dimi
Jan 15, 2011 Dorien rated it liked it
My second (and second in the series) Aunt Dimity. While it was enjoyable and I loved the imagery of the gardens and the other settings, still a lot of questions. I'm totally ok with "suspension of disbelief", but really. Within a few days, people think they'll marry the person they just met? Nanny Cole can make a dozen dresses, skirts, pants and knit at least 2 sweaters in 10 days? Why do we think Aunt Dimity might be a ghost? Or is it the grandmother's ghost? Or is there even a ghost? I was ove ...more
Jan 18, 2016 Andrea rated it really liked it
This second book in the Aunt Dimity series defies easy classification just as much as the first did and was just as enjoyable as the first. I don’t even know how to explain these. On a surface level, they are quite silly – a ghost is nudging around little changes in peoples lives and matchmaking and solving sort-of mysteries. But the way the story unfolds is just really charming. The characters are well drawn and I like most of them. The main character is unusually sensible (for the main charact ...more
Aug 19, 2012 Elizabeth rated it it was amazing
This is such a good book!

It is the story of Emma and Derek Harris... how they met, fell in love and eventually got married and became the caretakers of Aunt Dimity's cottage in Finch.

It was a bit different than the other Aunt Dimity books I've read in that Aunt Dimity is only mentioned in this book. She is the reason that Emma and Derek ended up at the same castle on the Cornish coast at the same time.

There are a few mysteries in this book that Emma and Derek need to solve. On of them involves s
Dec 10, 2016 Sue rated it really liked it
It's been quite a while since I read the first one in this series and I had to do a little looking back to remember what happened as this novel tells the story of two of the characters introduced in the first one. It tells how Derek and Emma meet and the mystery surrounding Penford Hall. Aunt Dimity appears in person in the prologue and then is a motivating force behind some of the events. This is a very sweet story with lovable characters and was a joy to read.
Apr 13, 2009 Terri rated it really liked it
Shelves: mystery
This is the 2nd in the series, and I enjoyed it very much. The first 2 books of the series are the best, in my view. The later books stay with one main character and sometime I don't like her much. This book deviates from the norm as it features a different heroine. Emma does appear in later stories, but only as a minor character. I've always enjoyed the touch of magic in this series, like the characters (more in the early books) and the underlying premise of all the stories.
Dec 29, 2008 Amber rated it really liked it
I really enjoy these Aunt Dimity books. This one started out a little slower than the last but once I got into it I was hooked. I love that they are romantic mysteries and that the mysteries are so different than your traditional mystery. They aren't gory or scary but a mystery even still. I am so glad there are more Aunt Dimity books to be read. They are a great book to pickup if you want something easy and fun to read-a nice casual book.
Debbie Maskus
Apr 06, 2012 Debbie Maskus rated it it was ok
I am dismayed that the characters from the first Aunt Dimity novel are not in this novel. The only thread woven from the last novel is Aunt Dimity and the Pym twins. This is an interesting story of deception and loyalty among a small English village. Atherton writes a mild, easy-going mystery with no graphic murder scenes. Atherton dwells on family and love instead of pain and murder. Many readers will miss the blood and gore and past on reading the Aunt Dimity series.
Jun 03, 2013 Laura rated it really liked it
Although I liked Aunt Dimity and the Duke, I didn't love it the way I did the first one. I had a little trouble with the resolution of the mystery (I don't think it's spoiling anything to say that being aggravating is not an excuse for aggravated assault). But there was a lot of delight to be had. I certainly plan to continue with Aunt Dimity and company.
Jul 19, 2012 Cathy rated it it was ok
Shelves: mystery
Although the book is titled Aunt Dimity and the Duke, Dimity is a very peripheral character in this story and barely even makes an appearance.

Like other reviewers have said, some happenings are just a little to far-fetched to believe such as Nanny Cole sewing new clothes and knitting sweaters seemingly overnight.

The author included a recipe for strawberry tarts.
Disappointing after the enjoying two other Aunt Dimitys. Aunt Dimity was mentioned sporadically, but not a big part of the book. There were too many minor characters to keep track of.
Jun 10, 2011 Jennifer rated it really liked it
The Aunt Dimity books are quick and fun reads. Fiction with a mystery thrown in (rather than a detective novel).
Sarah Coller
Feb 24, 2017 Sarah Coller rated it liked it
This was my second Aunt Dimity novel. The first was the latest, Aunt Dimity and the Buried Treasure. After reading that one, I was looking forward to more in the same style. This book, second in the series and published 23 years ago, is nothing like "Buried Treasure" (published very recently). Aunt Dimity played a very tiny part in this book and, had I not read on the back that she was a ghost, I'd never have realized it as that fact wasn't made clear in the book. The story itself is a good one- ...more
K. East
May 12, 2017 K. East rated it really liked it
Very entertaining novel. The murder mystery seemed a bit of a stretch when Emma and Derek first suggested it, but the resolution of the mystery provided a very interesting twist. Lots of "happily ever after" at the end of the book, but I suspect that all the Aunt Dimity books may lean in that direction. Which is not all bad, as long as you know what you are getting. And in a world filled with thrillers that present violence and cruel destruction of human life as the norm, this series is a refres ...more
May 24, 2017 Paige rated it it was amazing
Shelves: cozy-mysteries
I need more Derek and Emma in the series.
May 21, 2017 Lizz rated it really liked it
Shelves: physical-book, 2017
Not as strong of a connection to this book versus the first, but still lovely. I feel like a bit of an idiot for not recognizing Emma and Derek until the last page or two.
May 03, 2017 Kristen rated it liked it
Shelves: mystery, fiction
Fun! Now to try the strawberry tart recipe in the back. . .
Mar 13, 2017 Susan rated it it was amazing
This is the second book in the Aunt Dimity series, and is another of my favorites. This one doesn't involve Lori, the heroine of the other books, but her eventual neighbor, Emma. After being dumped by a long-time boyfriend, Emma takes leave from her job as a computer specialist and goes to England for a tour of gardens - she is an avid gardener. At one of the gardens she encounters the Pym sisters, neighbors of Aunt Dimity, and the sisters recommend that she go to Penfield Hall, giving her their ...more
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Play Book Tag: Aunt Dimity and the Duke - Nancy Atherton - 3 stars 1 6 Jul 01, 2016 10:21AM  
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Nancy Atherton is not a white-haired Englishwoman with a softly wrinkled face, a wry smile, and wise gray eyes, nor does she live in a thatched cottage behind a babbling brook in a tranquil, rural corner of the Cotswolds.

She has never taken tea with a vicar (although she drank an Orange Squash with one once) and she doesn't plan to continue writing after her allotted time on earth (though such pla
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Other Books in the Series

An Aunt Dimity Mystery (1 - 10 of 22 books)
  • Aunt Dimity's Death (An Aunt Dimity Mystery #1)
  • Aunt Dimity's Good Deed (Aunt Dimity, #3)
  • Aunt Dimity Digs In (An Aunt Dimity Mystery, #4)
  • Aunt Dimity's Christmas (An Aunt Dimity Mystery, #5)
  • Aunt Dimity Beats the Devil (An Aunt Dimity Mystery, #6)
  • Aunt Dimity: Detective (An Aunt Dimity Mystery, #7)
  • Aunt Dimity Takes a Holiday (An Aunt Dimity Mystery, #8)
  • Aunt Dimity: Snowbound (Aunt Dimity #9)
  • Aunt Dimity and the Next of Kin (An Aunt Dimity Mystery, #10)
  • Aunt Dimity and the Deep Blue Sea (An Aunt Dimity Mystery, #11)

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