Prince Harry’s ‘intimate’ memoir: what might he reveal?
Duke of Sussex says he’s ‘excited’ for public to read account of his life ‘that’s accurate and wholly truthful’
Prince Harry is writing an “intimate and heartfelt memoir” that will be published by Penguin Random House likely late next year, the publishing giant revealed yesterday.
The Duke of Sussex’s forthcoming book promises to share “for the very first time” his experience of living life in the public eye “from childhood to the present day”. It will cover everything from his time in Afghanistan as part of his military duty to “the joy he has found in being a husband and father”, the official release says. Prince Harry plans to donate proceeds from his book to charity, a figure which Page Six, the New York Post’s celebrity news site, says will be at least $20m (£14.7m).
“I’m writing this not as the prince I was born but as the man I have become,” said Harry, 36, in a statement included in the same release. He added that he is “excited” for the public to read an account of his life “that’s accurate and wholly truthful” – a nod to his long-term battles with the media which he spoke about during his bombshell interview with Oprah Winfrey last March.
Sources close to the Prince of Wales told The Times that Prince Charles and Camilla, the Duchess of Cornwall, were “surprised” at the news last night. “It is understood they did not know about it”, reports the newspaper, adding that one unnamed aide simply said “Oh gosh.”
So what bombshell revelations could Harry’s memoir contain?
Since stepping down from royal duties along with Meghan Markle in January 2020, the prince hasn’t held back when discussing his experiences of being part of the UK’s most famous family.
When speaking to Winfrey, Harry revealed that he felt “trapped” in the construct of the institution and that his father had stopped taking his calls. Two months later, speaking on the Armchair Expert podcast, the Prince openly discussed his family’s “genetic pain and suffering” and said he wanted to “break the cycle” for his children.
One of the biggest talking points to come out of Harry and Meghan’s TV interview with Winfrey was the couple’s claim that an unnamed member of the Royal Family questioned “how dark” baby Archie was going to be “and what that would mean or look like”. At the time, the Duchess of Sussex would not name names as she said it “would be very damaging to them”.
But Charlie Lankston in the Daily Mail says “Harry may well choose to name the person involved in his memoir – which would no doubt spark a furious backlash, and could well prompt an investigation into that royal’s behaviour”.
The prince might also want to put forward his wife’s side of the story on allegations that she “faced a bullying complaint made by one of her closest advisers” while working as a royal, as reported by The Times in March.
Sources told the paper at the time that she had been accused of driving “two personal assistants out of the household” and “undermining the confidence of a third staff member”. Since then, at least ten ex-Palace employees are said to be queueing up to present evidence at an upcoming independent inquiry.
Meanwhile, Harry’s fractured relationship with his brother, thought to be trigged by his decision to step down from royal duties, has been widely reported on – but little is known about the precise details of the pair’s painful fallout. This upcoming memoir “could well offer much more detail about his relationship with his brother – and finally bring to light the Prince's views on what exactly sparked the fall-out in the first place”, says Lankston in the Mail.
“If the project gives the Duke of Sussex an unfettered opportunity to give his side of the story of ‘Megxit’ – the couple’s 2019 decision to step back from royal duties – or settle the score on how the death of his mother, Princess Diana, was handled by the royals, it will doubtless make history,” adds Page Six.