Palace Finds Prince Harry Memoir Title ‘Very Provocative,’ Expert Says

Prince Harry‘s memoir, titled Spare, is definitely attention-grabbing, with one royal expert saying the palace reportedly finds the title “very provocative.” The expert weighs in on when Harry may have started to perceive “spare” as a derogatory term.

Meghan Markle wearing a white shirt and Prince Harry wearing a blue shirt, both looking to the right side of the photo
Meghan Markle and Prince Harry | Chris Jackson – Pool/Getty Images

Palace finds Prince Harry’s memoir title ‘very provocative,’ expert says

During the Nov. 3 episode of Palace Confidential, royal editor Rebecca English discussed the title of Prince Harry’s book.

“Most provocative I think is the title Spare. I’ve seen some very funny memes, as I’m sure you all have on social media,” she said.

English continued, “The palace are being really careful about this. They don’t want to engage until they hear what’s in it. But people I’ve spoken to are kind of well-plumbed into the situation find that title very, very provocative indeed.”

The expert pointed out that the palace didn’t know the title until it was announced. “They were reading it on social media — his family, the royal household — at the same time we were. And I think that probably tells you all you need to know,” she said.

Royal expert takes aim at Prince Harry’s ‘self-pity’ with the book title

Royal commentator Richard Eden weighed in on the choice of title and the cover photo as well.

“The photograph on the front — it’s a bit like a sort of police mug shot, isn’t it?” he said. “It’s almost a sort of passive-aggressive shot but it’s very similar to the cover of the other bestseller that the ghostwriter did with Andre Agassi, tennis superstar. Again, that was a one word title and a very similar front cover.”

Eden said he’s not impressed with the title. “It just conjures so many images of self-pity really,” he said. “It’s all sort of woe is me, I’ve had such a hard time and everything.”

He added, “You forget this is a prince born into privilege, that every privilege in the world and now he’s got American firms like Netflix throwing millions at him. Spare us the self-pity!”


Prince Harry’s Memoir ‘Will Be Really Difficult for William,’ Expert Says

Expert wonders when Harry started perceiving ‘spare’ differently

While discussing the term “spare,” which comes from the saying “the heir and the spare,” English pointed out, “When he was younger, Harry actually quite reveled in it.”

English shared a story about how Prince Harry used to feel like being the spare took the pressure off of him. “Ken Wolfe, Princess Diana’s former bodyguard, recounts how, in the car once, Harry was playing up, being naughty and William was trying to admonish him,” she said. “Basically Harry said, ‘Well it doesn’t matter. You know, I can do what I want because basically, I’m not going to have the responsibility that you will have.'”

She also recalled that later, as an adult, Harry was asked about moving down the line of succession after Prince William had children. “I remember, very distinctly, when Prince George and Princess Charlotte were born — I think it was Prince George — Harry was asked by a broadcaster how he felt about going down the pecking order,” English said.

“His answer, I think, was so illuminating. He basically said, ‘Great, like it means basically I’m one less away from all of that stress and restrain and responsibility that comes with being the heir to the throne,'” she said.

English asked, “Where did that change happen?”

She explained, “Why did he start viewing it differently … It was made very clear to me and others, towards the latter stages of his life within the royal family, that actually he got quite annoyed by the fact that he was playing second fiddle to William and felt that there was a rush to get everything he wanted to done.”