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A royal expert believes that Prince Harry titling his memoir Spare is a “true turning point,” noting that referencing himself in this way is a “no going back” moment.

Prince Harry and Meghan Markle walking together, holding hands with Harry wearing a light blue jacket and Meghan in a white shirt dress
Prince Harry and Meghan Markle | Chris Jackson/Getty Images

Expert analyzes Prince Harry’s memoir cover photo

In an article for Town & Country, royal expert Victoria Murphy shared her analysis of the title of Prince Harry’s memoir, Spare, and why it’s significant.

Murphy dissected the Prince Harry cover photo, noting that you first notice his eyes, “with a fixed gaze on the reader, they hold an expression that has been chosen over all others to set the tone for this much-anticipated memoir.”

She continued, “Steely is one way to describe the look. Determined perhaps another. Serious, certainly — yet not totally morose.”

Prince Harry naming his memoir ‘Spare’ is a ‘true turning point,’ expert says

Murphy further explored the significance of the one-word title. “So dominant is Harry’s face on the front cover that the book’s title, nestled in thin letters beneath his chin, almost appears as an afterthought,” she wrote. “But it is a title that has been chosen to be anything but passed over. It is a title that marks a true turning point.”

The royal expert shared, “After months of whispers that his memoirs were (or should be) rewritten or ‘toned down’ in the wake of the queen’s death or that they were delayed or even being scrapped altogether, Harry’s provocative decision to label himself the spare suggests the opposite is true.”

Murphy shared that publisher Penguin Random House teasing “raw, unflinching honesty” from Harry may have “devastating implications for his family and the monarchy.”

According to the royal expert, the book title is significant in its reference to the phrase the “heir and a spare” that “has been used prolifically to refer to British royalty for the past 100 years.”

She added, “It is a word that Harry knew was attached to him as he grew up alongside his brother, the heir Prince William. But it is not a word that you would ever expect to hear the royal family use officially.”

The fact that Harry is using this title for his book, Murphy said, “can be seen as a symbol that he has once again crossed into territory where the monarchy would not go.”

She explained, “It signals to us that he will talk about things in a way that once he did not; a precursor that much will be unleashed when the pages of the book are turned.”


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Prince Harry book title hints at a ‘no going back’ moment, expert believes

It’s not known if Prince Harry’s book will be a tell-all filled with royal family dirty laundry, but his choice of title has experts assuming it will be revealing.

“Of all the pivotal ‘no going back’ moments since he and Meghan left royal life, this is perhaps the most significant,” Murphy wrote. “The man who once fiercely guarded his private life now wants to broadcast it, raw and unflinchingly. The prince who spent his life inside the fold is now on the other side — or perhaps we should say he is on another side.”

Murphy pointed out that “a lot is at stake” with Harry’s book. “His truth can also significantly influence how his family members — who continue to say very little publicly about anything that has happened behind closed doors — are seen,” she noted.