The book was kept under five keys, under the strictest secrecy. But the British outlet The Guardian managed to access its pages on Wednesday night, previewing part of the content of Spare (“replacement” in Spanish), autobiography of Prince Harry, the controversial member of the British Royal Family.
“For Meg, Archie and Lili… and, of course, my mother”, reads the dedication of the book translated in its Spanish edition as In the shadow, an idea that crosses from beginning to end the text of the son of King Carlos III and the late Princess Diana. The resentment for being the “replacement” of the heir to the throne, his brother William of him, is evident in the first pages, where Harry tells the story of the supposed first words of his father when the second son was born of the.
“Marvelous! Now you have given me an heir and a spare: my work is done, ”the then Prince Charles would have said to Diana, his wife, the day Harry was born. According to The Guardian, the title is inspired by an old saying in royal and aristocratic circles, where the first son inherits titles, power and fortune, while the second is therefore the Spare, or replacement. Always ready in case something happened to the firstborn.
From the prince’s drug use to the number of Taliban he killed during his second tour of duty in Afghanistan in 2012, they are part of the 400-page book that goes on sale on January 10, chronicling the moments most dramatic events in the life of the Duke of Sussex, as well as his relationship with the British Royal Family.
It was the year 2018, on the eve of the marriage between Prince Harry and the American actress Meghan Markle, and things between the brothers were not looking good. A series of discussions generated a maelstrom that culminated in both of them coming to the brink of fists, and it all began with the preparations for the important wedding.
It was during a bridesmaid dress test for Charlotte, the current princess of Wales and William’s daughter, where Kate Middleton, his wife, would have ended up crying, detailed reports at the time.
To smooth things over, the two couples met in June of the same year, a month after the marriage. They wanted to “relax the atmosphere”, detailed the Daily Mail newspaper. But the occasion generated the opposite.
According to Harry’s book, his wife would have said that Kate had a “baby brain due to her hormones”, in reference to the recent birth of Luis, the third child of the heir couple in April 2018. The comment did not go down well. William called Meghan “rude” to her face and “pointed a finger at her.” “These things are not done here,” the older brother would have said, to which the former American actress replied: “If you don’t mind, keep your finger out of my face.”
A year later, in 2019, Guillermo arrived at the place where his younger brother lived at the time, in Nottingham Cottage, London. According to The Guardian, who had early access to the book due to a leak, William went to meet Harry to discuss “all the catastrophe” surrounding their relationship, for which they met in private.
Calling Meghan again “difficult”, “rude” and “abrasive”, the argument quickly escalated, with Harry attacking him back by claiming he was “parroting (to repeat) the press narrative” about his wife. Blaming each other for acting like “heir”, said Harry, and not “settling to be the replacement”, Guillermo counterattacked, the conversation got out of hand.
According to Diana’s second son, Guillermo assured that he wanted to help him. “Are you serious? Help me? Excuse me, is that what you call this? Help me?” Harry retorted, angering Carlos’ eldest son. “Willy (the way he calls his older brother), I can’t talk to you when you’re like this,” he told her after handing her a glass.
“He left the water, insulted me and pounced on me. Everything went very fast. Very fast. She grabbed me by the neck, ripping off my necklace, and pulled me to the ground. I landed on the dog bowl, which broke under my back, the pieces cutting me. I lay there in a daze for a moment, then got up and told him to go away,” Harry wrote.
After urging him to hit back, Guillermo left the room and then returned “with a regretful face and apologized.” He again he walked away, and again “he turned and replied: ‘You don’t have to tell Meg about this.'” When his wife noticed “scratches and bruises” on her back, she told him what had happened. “She wasn’t that surprised, and she wasn’t that angry,” she noted. “She was terribly sad.”
In the book, he treats Guillermo as “his dear brother and his archenemy.” In it teaser from an interview with Good Morning America they asked him for that phrase, to which he replied that “there has always been this competition between us, strangely. I think he actually plays on the ‘heir/replacement’ thing.”
In 2005, a front page of the tabloid newspaper The Sun reached all corners of the world. “Harry the Nazi”, headlined the British tabloid, which showed a young prince dressed in white, with a Nazi swastika on his left arm.
According to the Page Six site, which accessed the book in a small window of time when it was sold in Spain after the Guardian leak, Harry says in a passage that he had to choose between two suits: an airplane pilot uniform or a Nazi uniform.
At the time, the young man was 20 years old, and both he and his brother would attend the “native and colonial” themed party organized by the equestrian Olympic medalist Richard Meade.
To make up his mind, he turned to his brother and his partner, he tells for the first time in the book. “I called Willy and Kate and asked what they thought. Nazi uniform, they said. They both laughed out loud when they saw him arrive at the party dressed like this. “The two howled. Worse than Willy’s tights outfit! Much more ridiculous. Which, again, was the question”, narrates the prince.
In Spare, Prince Harry also disclosed a figure that he had never released, despite possible heightened fears for his personal safety. His name is already being targeted by terrorists because of his real status and his ties to the British Armed Forces, the Daily Mail said.
As part of the Army, the soldier Harry would have killed 25 Taliban fighters during his second tour of duty in Afghanistan, in 2012. Known as “Captain Wales”, the member of the British Royal Family assured in his book that he did not consider the dead as “people,” but rather as “chess pieces” that he had successfully managed to remove from the board.
In the first time he has revealed the number of people he has murdered as a member of the British Armed Forces, Harry said that “it seemed essential to me not to be afraid of that number. So my number is 25. It’s not a number that fills me with satisfaction, but I’m not ashamed either.”
The confession earned him criticism from military veterans. Former Royal Marine Ben McBean, the person Harry declared a “hero” after he lost an arm and leg to a bomb blast, called on the prince to “shut up” on Twitter.
“I love you #PrinceHarry, but you have to shut up! It makes you wonder what people he hangs out with. If she was good people, someone would have told her to stop by now,” she wrote.
They also criticized him from politics, this time at the hands of Colonel Bob Stewart, Beckenham’s Conservative deputy. “I wonder why he does those things. Real soldiers tend to be shy… People I know don’t brag about such things. They rather regret having to do it,” he told the Daily Mail.
In addition to the already known use of alcohol and cannabis, Harry saved a space in the book to reveal that he also used cocaine “a few times” during the years when he was known for party hopping.
“It wasn’t very fun and it didn’t make me feel particularly happy like the others, but it made me feel different, and that was my main goal. To feel. Be different”, wrote the grandson of the late Queen Elizabeth II.
It was precisely on his grandmother’s Golden Jubilee, in 2002, that an anonymous member of the Royal House staff dragged him to an office after a journalist in the palace asked him about his drug use habits.
In Spare, Harry recounts when, during a hunting weekend, he was offered a line of cocaine. He did it, he explained in the book, because he was a “17-year-old boy willing to try almost anything that would upset the established order.”
Inescapable, as Diana is, the Princess of Wales is also part of Harry’s narrative, where he recounted how, in despair over the loss of his mother, he sought the help of a woman who “claimed to have ‘powers’ ”.
Diana died in a car accident in Paris, when Harry was only 12 years old, in 1997. In the book, Harry acknowledged that during his youth he traveled the route his mother took when she died, in that iconic Parisian tunnel, in a car many times. a vain attempt to understand what had happened.
In this context, the prince turned to a woman – whom he did not describe as a psychic, medium or witch – recommended by his acquaintances. “I recognized that there was a high probability that it was a hoax,” he admitted in his book, but detailed that “as soon as we sat down together, I felt an energy around him.”
– “Your mother is with you”, said the woman.
– “I know. I’ve been feeling it lately,” Harry replied.
After telling him that Diana was with him “right now”, the Duke of Sussex assured that he felt warmth on his neck and his eyes watered.
The story is part of the shocking revelations of Sparean autobiography that, if plans are not changed due to the leak, will be published on January 10.