Prince Harry’s memoir has taken the world by storm, revealing his frustrations with playing second fiddle to his brother and his treatment by certain family members and the wider institution. The book provides an eye-opening account of a royal experience that may be perceived externally as luxurious and privileged, but for Harry, has also been traumatic and heartbreaking.
Scathing Criticism and Personal Revelations
Harry’s memoir is scathing and hypercritical toward several family members, who are not defending themselves as the palace is not responding to the claims. The book reveals deeply personal conversations despite Harry’s previous railing against the media for invasions of privacy. The royal establishment may be internally aghast at Harry’s decision to air the family’s dirty laundry to the world, but externally there has been a wall of silence, with both Buckingham Palace and Kensington Palace repeatedly declining to comment.
Princess Diana and Sibling Rivalry
Princess Diana is a looming presence throughout the book, and another theme is the lifelong sibling rivalry between Harry and William and how their positions as “heir” and “spare” have pulled them apart. Harry’s memoir also details the invasive methods used by the paparazzi and claims that some of “the firm” fed negative stories to the media in an effort to curry favor with journalists for their own favorable coverage.
Public Reaction and Controversy
Prince Harry’s memoir is the UK’s fastest-selling nonfiction book ever, sparking controversy with claims that Prince William physically attacked him and accused his father of putting his own interests first. The Guardian asked readers for their views on the memoir and the publicity around it. Some readers said their views on the royal family had been changed, while others said it strengthened existing positions.
Changing Perceptions of the Royal Family
Some readers now view the royal family as out of touch and stand for inequality of opportunity in the country. Others feel that Harry now seems as entitled as the other Windsors. However, some readers feel that the memoir has humanized the royal family and demonstrated that even those in the highest realms of society are affected by family drama and mental health challenges. One reader believes that the royals come across better than the media presents.