Prince Harry's memoir could be 'score-settling' says Russell Myers
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Prince Harry’s memoir is set to be released on January 10, 2023, 18 months after his four-book deal was revealed. The book, titled Spare, features a close-up photograph of the Duke of Sussex looking directly into the camera. It was taken by Ramona Rosales who also took the images for Meghan Markle’s cover interview with Variety magazine. Royal commentators, Rachel Burchfield and Jessica Robinson, noted the connection between the photos, adding it appears that Harry is following in his wife’s footsteps and embracing the Hollywood lifestyle.
The hosts of Podcast Royal discussed Harry’s book on their most recent episode, with Ms Robinson saying: “The cover is a close-up photo of his face in what looks like the warm California sunlight.
“He’s got one of those expressions where you can’t really tell what he’s thinking; it’s not really a smile because his mouth is closed, but it’s also not overly serious and I don’t think he looks upset in the picture.
“And the photo was apparently shot by the same photographer who took Meghan’s photo for her Variety interview.”
She added: “The cover of the book is giving Hollywood vibes for sure.”
Ms Burchfield noted the similarity between the book’s cover photo and Meghan’s Variety cover photo, saying: “[It looks] like a movie poster of a science fiction film — he just looks very pensive. I can definitely see the parallels between Meghan’s photo for Variety and his photo,” adding: “It’s an interesting photo. It’s maybe not my favourite of Harry, but it does the job.”
Ms Robinson agreed, saying she “didn’t love” Meghan’s cover photo, continuing: “I wasn’t really a big fan of either of them — his or hers.”
Harry enlisted the award-winning penmanship of author JR Moehringer to ghostwrite his memoir. Mr Moehringer is an American novelist and journalist who has written memoirs for two notable public figures during his career — Andre Agassi and Nike co-founder Phil Knight.
Last month, Harry was called out by Piers Morgan over his new memoir’s cover photo, which draws similarities to that of tennis ace Agassi.
Morgan tweeted: “This is hilarious… Harry didn’t just hire [the] same ghost-writer who did Andre Agassi’s book, he’s even copied the front cover photo.
He added: “Only difference is one had a world-class talent for sport, the other a world-class talent for whining.”
In Agassi’s 2009 book, ‘Open: An Autobiography,’ the sportsman talks about his childhood and his unconventional Armenian father, who moved to the US from Iran, where he was a professional boxer. It delves into his life as his father groomed him for stardom by building a tennis court at their home and sending Agassi to a tennis boarding school.
In 2010, the book won the Autobiography category of the British Sports Book Awards and in 2018, it was listed on Esquire as one of “The 30 Best Sports Books Ever Written”.
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Harry’s memoir shot up in the sales charts of online seller Amazon in the UK, Canada and the US within hours of the launch of preorders last month. Publisher Penguin Random House claimed the Prince’s book promises “raw, unflinching honesty,” and several publishing experts have no doubt the book will be a bestseller upon its release.
Literary agent Peter Cox told Express.co.uk last week: “There’s no doubt that it will definitely shoot straight to the top of the bestseller charts. All the massive publicity it’s already getting guarantees that.”
Meanwhile, Jane Tabachnick, publisher at Simply Good Press and publishing consultant at Jane Tabachnick & Co said: “I did think the book would be an immediate bestseller and seeing as it is now available on pre-sale, it is already a bestselling book.
“I believe readers have a keen interest in the British Royal Family, especially from the personal perspective of someone so closely in line to the throne at one point.”
However, Mr Cox did question “how long will it stay there,” explaining: “There is such a thing as over-exposure. People may quickly find they’ve had more Harry than they can stomach, in which case its fall will be as swift as its rise.”
Speaking specifically about the British market, Mr Cox added: “Also, Harry is not Diana. Whereas she had broad public sympathy — the People’s Princess — Harry has turned his back on us. That alone may haunt the project in the UK.”
Ms Robinson echoed Mr Cox’s concerns, arguing that the Sussexes are already stepping into the domain of media “fatigue”.
She said: “Between the podcasts, the Netflix stuff, the interviews… I’ve been feeling like we’ve been getting a little bit of fatigue from overexposure to them and everything they’ve got going on.
“I just like we’re getting a lot and when you start to get a lot, they become a little bit less interesting. They don’t pull you in quite as much.”
However, Ms Burchfield argued: “I guess this is what we asked for because we were [saying]: ‘Where’s the Spotify content, where’s the Netflix content?’ And now here it is and we’re saying: ‘Oh my gosh, it’s too much.’ I personally am enjoying it.”
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