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The Haunting of Prince Harry

By Rebecca Mead

The royal family.

Balmoral Castle, in the Scottish Highlands, was Queen Elizabeth’s preferred resort among her several castles and palaces, and in the opening pages of “ Spare ” (Random House), the much anticipated, luridly leaked, and compellingly artful autobiography of Prince Harry, the Duke of Sussex, its environs are intimately described. We get the red-coated footman attending the heavy front door; the mackintoshes hanging on hooks; the cream-and-gold wallpaper; and the statue of Queen Victoria, to which Harry and his older brother, William, always bowed when passing. Beyond lay the castle’s fifty bedrooms—including the one known in the brothers’ childhood as the nursery, unequally divided into two. William occupied the larger half, with a double bed and a splendid view; Harry’s portion was more modest, with a bed frame too high for a child to scale, a mattress that sagged in the middle, and crisp bedding that was “pulled tight as a snare drum, so expertly smoothed that you could easily spot the century’s worth of patched holes and tears.”

It was in this bedroom, early in the morning of August 31, 1997, that Harry, aged twelve, was awakened by his father, Charles, then the Prince of Wales, with the terrible news that had already broken across the world: the princes’ mother, Princess Diana, from whom Charles had been divorced a year earlier and estranged long before that, had died in a car crash in Paris. “He was standing at the edge of the bed, looking down,” Harry writes of the moment in which he learned of the loss that would reshape his personality and determine the course of his life. He goes on to describe his father’s appearance with an unusual simile: “His white dressing gown made him seem like a ghost in a play.”

What ghost would that be, and what play? The big one, of course, bearing the name of that other brooding princely Aitch: Hamlet. Within the first few pages of “Spare,” Shakespeare’s play is alluded to more than once. There’s a jocular reference: “To beard or not to beard” is how Harry foreshadows a contentious family debate over whether he should be clean-shaven on his wedding day. And there’s an instance far graver: an account, in the prologue, of a fraught encounter between Harry, William, and Charles in April, 2021, a few hours after the funeral of the Duke of Edinburgh, the Queen’s husband and the Royal Family’s patriarch, at Windsor. The meeting had been called by Harry in the vain hope that he might get his obdurate parent and sibling, first and second in line to the throne, to see why he and his wife, Meghan, the Duchess of Sussex, had felt it necessary to flee Britain for North America, relinquishing their royal roles, if not their ducal titles. The three men met in Frogmore Gardens, on the Windsor estate, which includes the last resting place of many illustrious ancestors, and as they walked its gravel paths they talked with increasing tension about their apparently irreconcilable differences. They “were now smack in the middle of the Royal Burial Ground,” Harry writes, “more up to our ankles in bodies than Prince Hamlet.”

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King Charles, as he became upon the death of Queen Elizabeth , in September, will not find much to like in “Spare,” which may offer the most thoroughgoing scything of treacherous royals and their scheming courtiers since the Prince of Denmark’s bloody swath through the halls of Elsinore. Queen Camilla, formerly “the Other Woman” in Charles and Diana’s unhappy marriage, is, Harry judges, “dangerous,” having “sacrificed me on her personal PR altar.” William’s wife, Kate, now the Princess of Wales, is haughty and cool, brushing off Meghan’s homeopathic remedies. William himself is domineering and insecure, with a wealth of other deficits: “his familiar scowl, which had always been his default in dealings with me; his alarming baldness, more advanced than my own; his famous resemblance to Mummy, which was fading with time.” Charles is, for the most part, more tenderly drawn. In “Spare,” the King is a figure of tragic pathos, whose frequently repeated term of endearment for Harry, “darling boy,” most often precedes an admission that there is nothing to be done—or, at least, nothing he can do—about the burden of their shared lot as members of the nation’s most important, most privileged, most scrutinized, most publicly dysfunctional family. “Please, boys—don’t make my final years a misery,” he pleads, in Harry’s account of the burial-ground showdown.

As painful as Charles must find the book’s revealing content, he might grudgingly approve of Harry’s Shakespearean flourishes in delivering it. Thirty-odd years ago, in giving the annual Shakespeare Birthday Lecture at the Swan Theatre in Stratford-Upon-Avon, the future monarch spoke of the eternal relevance of the playwright’s insights into human nature, citing, among other references, Hamlet’s monologue with the phrase “What a piece of work is a man!” Shakespeare, Charles told his audience, offers us “blunt reminders of the flaws in our own personalities, and of the mess which we so often make of our lives.” In “Spare,” Harry describes his father’s devotion to Shakespeare, paraphrasing Charles’s message about the Bard’s works in terms that seem to refer equally to that other pillar of British identity, the monarchy: “They’re our shared heritage, we should be cherishing them, safeguarding them, and instead we’re letting them die.”

Harry counts himself among “the Shakespeareless hordes,” bored and confused as a teen-ager when his father drags him to see performances of the Royal Shakespeare Company; disinclined to read much of anything, least of all the freighted works of Britain’s national author. (“Not really big on books,” he confesses to Meghan Markle when, on their second date, she tells him she’s having an “Eat, Pray, Love” summer, and he has no idea what she’s on about.) Harry at least gives a compelling excuse for his inability to discover what his father so valued, though it’s probably not one that he gave to his schoolmasters at Eton. “I tried to change,” he recalls. “I opened Hamlet . Hmm: Lonely prince, obsessed with dead parent, watches remaining parent fall in love with dead parent’s usurper . . . ? I slammed it shut. No, thank you.”

That passage indicates another spectral figure haunting the text of “Spare”—that of Harry’s ghostwriter, J. R. Moehringer. Harry, or his publishing house—which paid a reported twenty-million-dollar advance for the book—could not have chosen better. Moehringer is a Pulitzer Prize-winning reporter turned memoirist and novelist, as well as the ghostwriter of, most notably, Andre Agassi’s thrillingly candid memoir, “ Open .” In that book, published in 2009, a tennis ace once reviled for his denim shorts and flowing mullet revealed himself to be a troubled, tennis-hating neurotic with father issues and an unreliable hairpiece. When the title and the cover art of “Spare” were made public, late last year, the kinship between the two books—single-word title; closeup, set-jaw portrait—indicated that they were to be understood as fraternal works in the Moehringer œuvre. Moehringer has what is usually called a novelist’s eye for detail, effectively deployed in “Spare.” That patched, starched bed linen at Balmoral, emblazoned with E.R., the formal initials of the Queen , is, of course, a metaphor for the constricting, and quite possibly threadbare, fabric of the institution of monarchy itself.

Moehringer has also bestowed upon Harry the legacy that his father was unable to force on him: a felicitous familiarity with the British literary canon. The language of Shakespeare rings in his sentences. Those wanton journalists who publish falsehoods or half-truths? They treat the royals as insects: “What fun, to pluck their wings,” Harry writes, in an echo of “King Lear,” a play about the fragility of kingly authority. During his military training as a forward air controller, a role in which he guided the flights and firepower of pilots from an earthbound station, Harry describes the release of bombs as “spirits melting into air”—a phrase drawn from “The Tempest,” a play about a duke in exile across the water. Elevating flourishes like these give readers—perhaps British ones in particular—a shiver of recognition, as if the chords of “Jerusalem” were being struck on a church organ. But they also remind those readers of the necessary literary artifice at work in the enterprise of “Spare,” as Moehringer shapes Harry’s memories and obsessions, traumas and bugbears, into a coherent narrative: the peerless ghostwriter giving voice to the Shakespeareless prince.

Moehringer has fashioned the Duke of Sussex’s life story into a tight three-act drama, consisting of his occasionally wayward youth; his decade of military service, which included two tours of duty in Afghanistan; and his relationship with Meghan. Throughout, there are numerous bombshells, which—thanks to the o’er hasty publication of the book’s Spanish edition—did not so much melt into air as materialize into clickbait. These included the allegation that, in 1998, Camilla leaked word to a tabloid of her first meeting with Prince William—according to Harry, the opening sally in a campaign to secure marriage to Charles and a throne by his side. (Harry does not mention that, at the time, Camilla’s personal assistant took responsibility for the leak—she’d told her husband, a media executive, who’d told a friend, who’d told someone at the Sun , who’d printed it. Bloody journalists.) They also include less consequential but more titillating arcana, such as Harry’s account of losing his virginity, in a field behind a pub, to an unnamed older woman, who treated him “not unlike a young stallion. Quick ride, after which she’d smacked my rump and sent me off to graze.” The Daily Mail , Harry’s longtime media nemesis, had a field day with that revelation, door-stepping a now forty-four-year-old businesswoman to come up with the deathless headline “Horse-loving ex-model six years older than Harry, who once breathlessly revealed the Prince left her mouth numb with passionate kissing in a muddy field, refuses to discuss whether she is the keen horsewoman who took his virginity in a field.”

The leaks have done the book’s sales no harm, and neither have Harry’s pre-publication interviews on “Good Morning America” and “60 Minutes”; in the U.K., Harry did an hour-and-a-half-long special with Tom Bradby, the journalist to whom Meghan tearfully bemoaned, in the fall of 2019, that “not many people have asked if I’m O.K.” But “Spare” is worth reading not just for its headline-generating details but also for its narrative force, its voice, and its sometimes surprising wit. Harry describes his trepidation in telling his brother that he intended to propose to Meghan: William “predicted a host of difficulties I could expect if I hooked up with an ‘American actress,’ a phrase he always managed to make sound like ‘convicted felon’ ”—an observation so splendid that a reader can only hope it was actually Harry’s.

There is much in the book that people conversant with the contours of the Prince’s life, insofar as they have hitherto been reported, will find familiar. At the same time, Harry bursts any number of inaccurate reports, including a rumored flirtation with another convicted fel— sorry, American actress, Cameron Diaz: “I was never within fifty meters of Ms. Diaz, further proof that if you like reading pure bollocks then royal biographies are just your thing.” Not a few of the incidents Harry chooses to describe in detail are centered on images or stories already in the public domain, such as being beset by paparazzi when leaving night clubs—he explains that he started being ferried away in the trunk of his driver’s car so as to avoid lashing out at his pursuers—and being required to perform uncomfortable media interviews while serving in Afghanistan in exchange for the newspapers’ keeping shtum about his deployment, for security reasons. (An Australian publication blew the embargo, and Harry was swiftly extracted from the battlefield.)

Given that what Harry dredges up from his past are so often things that have been publicly documented, one wonders whether Moehringer was obliged to indulge Harry’s extended dilation upon media-inflicted wounds , through Zoom sessions that even sympathetic readers will find exhausting to contemplate. There is a certain amount of score-settling and record-straightening, which, though obviously important to the author, can be wearying to a reader, who may feel that if she has to read another word about those accursed bridesmaids’ dresses—of who said what to whom, and who caused whom to cry—she just might burst into tears herself. More significantly, though, there are broadsides against unforgivable intrusions committed by the press, including phone hacking. (Harry is still engaged in lawsuits against a number of British newspapers that allegedly intercepted his voice mails more than a dozen years ago.)

And then there are pages and pages devoted to Harry’s personal trials, which even the most dogged reporter on Fleet Street would not dare dream of uncovering. Chief among these is Harry’s struggle to overcome penile frostnip after a charitable Arctic excursion with a group of veterans, which ends up in a clandestine visit to a Harley Street doctor; he writes, “North Pole, I told him. I went to the North Pole and now my South Pole is on the fritz.” “On the fritz” is an Americanism that we can hope Harry picked up while guiding American pilots—he calls them Yanks—back to base in Afghanistan, rather than the exchange being the ingenious invention of his ghostwriter. Moehringer, on the whole, does a good job of conveying the laddish argot of a millennial British prince, who addresses his friends as “mate” and—repeatedly—calls his penis his “todger.”

Above all, “Spare” is worth reading for its potential historical import, which is likely to resonate, if not to the crack of doom, then well into the reign of King Charles III, and even into that of his successor. As was the case in 1992 with the publication of “ Diana: Her True Story ,” by Andrew Morton—to whom, it was revealed after her death, the Princess of Wales gave her full coöperation, herself the ghost behind the writer—“Spare” is an unprecedented exposure of the Royal Family from the most deeply embedded of informants. The Prince in exile does not hesitate to detail the pettiness, the vanity, and the inglorious urge toward self-preservation of those who are now the monarchy’s highest-ranking representatives.

It’s not clear that even now, having authored a book, Harry entirely understands what a book is; when challenged by Tom Bradby about his decision to reveal private conversations after having railed so forcefully about the invasive tactics of the press, Harry replied, “The level of planting and leaking from other members of the family means that in my mind they have written countless books—certainly, millions of words have been dedicated to trying to trash my wife and myself to the point of where I had to leave my country.” Pity the poor ghostwriter who has to hear his craft compared to the spewing verbiage of the media churn—by its commissioning subject, no less. (Man, what a piece of work.) Remarkably, Prince Harry has suggested that he sees the book as an invitation to reconciliation, addressed to his father and brother—a way of speaking to them publicly when all his efforts to address them privately have failed to persuade. “Spare” is, you might say, Prince Harry’s “Mousetrap”—a literary device intended to catch the conscience of the King, and the King after him.

If so, the ruse seems about as likely to end well for Harry as Hamlet’s play-within-a-play efforts did for him. Moehringer, at least, knows this, even if Harry may hope that his own royal plot will swerve unexpectedly from implacable tragedy to restitutive melodrama. In a soaring coda, Moehringer has the Prince once again reflecting on the royal dead, describing the family he belongs to as nothing less than a death cult. “We christened and crowned, graduated and married, passed out and passed over our beloveds’ bones. Windsor Castle itself was a tomb, the walls filled with ancestors,” Harry writes. It’s a powerful motif: the Prince—shattered in childhood by his mother’s death, his every step determined by the inescapable legacy of the countless royal dead—as an unwilling Hamlet pushed, rather than leaping, into the grave.

Recalling the meeting with his father and brother in the Frogmore burial ground with which the book began, Harry invokes the most famous soliloquy from the play of Shakespeare’s that he says he once slammed shut: “Why were we here, lurking along the edge of that ‘undiscover’d country, from whose bourn no traveller returns?’ ” Then comes a final, lovely, true, and utterly poetry-puncturing observation: “Though maybe that’s a more apt description of America.” In moving to the paradisaical climes of California, Harry has been spared a life he had no use for, which had no real use for him. The unlettered Prince has gained in life what Hamlet achieved only in death: his own story shaped on his own terms, thanks to the intervention of a skillful Horatio. You might almost call it Harry’s crowning achievement. ♦

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Prince Harry’s Spare is a sad and self-indicting portrait of royalty on the brink

The press is the villain but there are no heroes in Prince Harry’s new memoir.

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london review of books harry

Spare , the explosive new memoir from Prince Harry, is a conflicted book. It feels like a diatribe from someone who has only recently learned that it is physically possible to talk openly about his life and his anger, and who now has no idea how to modulate himself. The result is occasionally insufferable, but also oddly fascinating. At times you wonder if it should ever have been made public.

By turns artless and lyrical, affectionate and bitter, Spare ’s 400 pages read in a chaotic swirl. It spirals from the death of Harry’s mother Princess Diana in 1997, across his stunted and laddish adolescence, through his manly army days and his marriage to Meghan Markle, and up to the point that he decided to step down as a senior member of the British royal family in 2020.

Throughout, Harry’s ghostwriter J.R. Moehringer channels Harry’s voice with disarming candor. Intimate details of royal life stream out unceasingly: the brown peat-sweetened water in the baths at Balmoral, the petty squabbles over parking spots at Kensington Palace, the miserly Windsor Christmas traditions. (Princess Margaret, upon gifting Harry a cheap ballpoint pen, points out that it has a tiny rubber fish wrapped around it. “Wow,” says Harry.)

Moehringer, who won a Pulitzer under his own name for his 2000 Los Angeles Times article “ Crossing Over ” and ghostwrote Andre Agassi’s celebrated memoir Open , presents Harry to the reader as a likably jockish sort, straightforward and uninterested in literary flourishes. His sentences are simple and sparse, often broken into single words. Harry (via Moehringer) introduces a Faulkner reference by noting that he found it on, and he is charmingly overwhelmed by Meghan’s literary sophistication when she references Eat Pray Love , a book Harry informs us he has never heard of.

More Harry’s speed, it seems, are stories about how he lost his virginity (an older woman behind a pub) and how his penis was frostbitten during a trek to the North Pole (“Now my South Pole is on the fritz”). These he presents to the reader with a sort of dirty wink, an establishing of his credentials as a lad’s lad who would certainly never want to get in the way of anyone’s good time.

And yet even Harry, the subtext goes, can see that there is something badly wrong with the relationship between the British monarchy and the British press — especially when it comes to the way the British press treated Meghan, the British monarchy’s first member of color. So what’s everyone else’s excuse?

What, especially, is the excuse of Harry’s father and brother, King Charles and Prince William, that fraught, fragile family unit left behind after Diana’s death? They are the people to whom Harry was at one point closest in the world, and from whom he is now estranged. His relationships with them, and with his lost mother, are the beating heart of Spare .

Harry writes with palpable tenderness about Charles and William, whom he calls Pa and Willy. (In turn, Charles calls Harry “darling boy,” and William calls Harry “Harold.”) Charles appears during Harry’s childhood as an absentmindedly sweet man who leaves notes on Harry’s pillow about how proud he is of him. Every morning, Charles does headstands in his underwear for physical therapy, and he is attached to his childhood teddy bear, which he totes around everywhere. Meanwhile, William, the only person who truly understands the trauma of Diana’s death and of growing up in the glare of paparazzi flashbulbs, is in the first section of the book a partner in crime, a comrade, the first person Harry turns to with problems large and small: both when one of Diana’s old friends writes a tell-all, and when one of Harry’s school friends convinces him to shave off all his hair.

Yet Charles and William are both, in Harry’s telling, corrupted by the force of the crown, which pushes them to prioritize their own reputations and consider Harry’s expendable. Heirs, always, over spares.

“I was brought into the world in case something happened to Willy,” he writes bluntly. “I was summoned to provide backup, distraction, diversion and, if necessary, a spare part. Kidney, perhaps. Blood transfusion. Speck of bone marrow.” In real life, William seems to be in little need of organ donations, but both he and Charles could always use something to take the pressure of the press’s attention off of them. Harry provides a handy distraction.

To that end, Charles allows his office to form an alliance with a journalist who falsely reports that a teenage Harry has gone to rehab for his cocaine use. Rather than denouncing the story, they use it to make Charles look sympathetic as the harried single father to a teen addict. (Harry darkly sees the hand of Camilla Parker Bowles, Charles’s longtime mistress and now queen consort, at work here, as the source for the piece is a known Camilla ally.)

The pattern continues for decades, with Charles and Camilla continually prioritizing their own rehabilitation narrative over the reputations of their children, and justifying the practice because they are the ones closest to the throne. They even, Harry reports, try to pressure Kate to change her name from Catherine to Katherine so as to avoid having too many royal “C”s. (Kate apparently declined.)

Meanwhile, William, Harry writes, is incensed with the way Harry gets to ignore the rules that regiment William’s own life: The heir must always be beyond reproach, but the spare gets to have fun. William has to shave his beard, but Harry gets to wear his even when in military uniform, in violation of protocol. William has to get married in his bright red Irish Guards uniform even though he prefers to wear the Household Cavalry frock coat uniform, but Harry gets to wear his uniform of choice to his own wedding.

To compensate for the loss of autonomy, Harry writes, William pulls rank constantly. As a teen, he tells Harry not to talk to him when they are both at Eton. As an adult, he seems put off that Meghan goes for a hug rather than a curtsy upon first meeting him. He squabbles over how he and Harry should split up their charitable concerns and tries to veto both Harry’s Invictus Games for wounded veterans and his environmental advocacy in Africa. “I let you have veterans,” he tells Harry, “why can’t you let me have African elephants and rhinos?”

When the tabloids falsely report that Meghan made Kate cry during the lead-up to her wedding with Harry (the truth, as Meghan told Oprah , is that Kate made Meghan cry), Harry traces the story to William, who fed it to Charles and Camilla, who fed it to the press. No correction, he writes, will ever be forthcoming from any of them, “because it would embarrass the future queen. The monarchy always, at all costs, had to be protected.”

Later, Harry writes that William has grown suspicious of the enlightened new attitudes Harry espouses post-Meghan, and post-therapy (suggested by Meghan). He seems to feel almost abandoned, as though Harry has left him behind in the suffocating structure of the monarchy. He refuses to join Harry in therapy, calling him “brainwashed.”

In the midst of one argument, William throws Harry to the floor so forcefully that a dog food dish shatters below him. The act is both violently aggressive and oddly plaintive, like the last resort of a spurned lover. “Come on, we always used to fight,” William says. “You’ll feel better if you hit me.” Harry refuses. As William leaves, he asks Harry not to tell Meghan about the incident and says, “I didn’t attack you, Harold.”

As in all families, deep betrayals and petty nonsense seem to hold equal emotional weight for the Windsors. Harry is justly furious with Camilla for the public relations rehab maneuver, but he’s also angry that she converted one of his many old bedrooms into her dressing room after he moved out, and that she once seemed bored talking to him at afternoon tea. He’s glad she makes his father happy, but he resents her for taking Charles away from him, in the same way that he resents Kate, whom he seems to genuinely like, for taking William away from him.

Harry is ambivalent not just about his family but also about the press, the central villain of this story and an object of fascination for him. He despises them, actively blames them for his mother’s death, compares the sound of a paparazzo’s clicking shutter to the sound of gunfire. He also reads their coverage obsessively, to the point that absorbing press coverage of the royal family seems to be his main hobby. He has nicknames for his least favorite journalists and follows the minutia of their careers with interest. When he bitterly mocks one reporter for starting two sentences in a row with the word “but” in a negative story written about him when he was 15 years old, he does so with the cadence of a man who’s been workshopping the bit in his head nonstop for multiple decades. A therapist suggests that he is addicted to the press, and he doesn’t dispute it.

The root trauma here is, of course, Diana: radiant, beloved, unreachable Diana. Harry was 12 years old when Diana died in a car crash in Paris. After her death, he had to march behind her coffin in a funeral procession while the world watched, and then shake hands and exchange pleasantries with the many mourners who had never met her, and whose hands were often, he writes in a striking detail, wet with their own tears. He himself only cried when Diana was interred, and then felt “ashamed of violating the family ethos.” Then he found himself unable to cry over her again until he was an adult.

In Spare , Harry writes about Diana with a child’s idealization. In his prose, she is beyond saints, beyond goddesses. When he meets a woman who remembers Diana cuddling her on a charity visit when she was a small child, he is overwhelmed with jealousy. Trauma has gnawed holes into all his own memories of his mother.

The army, in Harry’s narrative, both steadies and further traumatizes him. He feels that he grew up while on active duty, that he found his sense of purpose. (He believes wholeheartedly that the war in Afghanistan was just, although he notes that he doesn’t think the army was all that effective at swaying Afghan hearts and minds for the cause of Western democracy. He also makes a point of noting that he made sure each of the 25 people he killed were verified Taliban operatives and not civilians.) But after he returns from his tours, he begins to suffer from panic attacks every time he has to speak in public. Agoraphobia keeps him tethered to the tiny bachelor’s apartment his father has allotted him, watching Friends reruns and identifying with Chandler.

Things will be different, Harry thinks, when he is married. “You weren’t a fully vested member of the Royal Family, indeed a true human being, until you were wed,” he explains. After he’s married, he imagines, he won’t be afraid to go out in public, because his family will start to respect him. His grandmother will stop sticking him in the servant’s wing during holidays at Balmoral, because he’ll have more seniority. His father will up his allowance and give him a family home. He’ll get his beloved brother back, because he and William and Kate and whoever he marries will get to be couple friends together. And he’ll have, at long last, a partner, someone to replace the source of unconditional love he lost when his mother died.

Instead, when Harry marries, Charles tells him that he can’t afford to support both him and the Cambridges. (Supporting his children, Harry notes with outrage, was supposed to be part of Charles’s job as Prince of Wales, not something he did “out of any largesse.” After all, being the sons of the Prince of Wales rendered both William and Harry unemployable.) William darkly repeats tabloid stories about Meghan being pushy and abrasive, while Kate flinches away from Meghan’s American friendliness. And Meghan is so badly harassed by racist tabloids that she begins to struggle with suicidal ideation.

Harry does not explicitly blame the monarchy for any of these problems. In subtext, Spare is a searing indictment of the British crown, which Harry depicts as a force that warps family dynamics under the strength of its imperative: to protect the crown, and those in the direct line of succession, at the expense of everyone else. Yet textually, Harry declares his full-throated support for the monarchy and for his commander-in-chief. He writes lyrically of the “magic” of the crown itself, the beauty of its jewels, of how much he believes it means to the people of the British Commonwealth.

“The crown seemed to possess some inner energy source, something beyond the sum of its parts,” he writes, in an apparent attempt to square the difference. “But all I could think … was how tragic that it should remain locked up in this Tower.” The implication seems to be that the monarchy is strong and powerful and a force for good, but that it’s been hindered by forces that go too far to protect it. The idea appears nowhere else in Spare , and here it feels less than convincing.

Spare does not exist, though, for the monarchy. Spare exists, apparently, for William and Charles, the lost loves of Harry’s life, stolen from him by their wives, by the press, by the institution, by everything they chose before they chose him. He is writing and publishing Spare , he explains in the foreword, in order to explain to them why he felt he had to leave them and the rest of the family behind, to move to California and start over.

He can’t explain it to their faces, he writes. “It would take too long. Besides, they’re clearly not in the right frame of mind to listen. Not now, anyway. Not today. And so: Pa? Willy? World? Here you go.”

The tragedy of Spare is that everything Harry has told us makes it clear that Charles and William will take this memoir not as an explanation or a love letter but as a betrayal worse than anything they ever did to Harry, and that they may not be wrong. Even if they never read it, as seems highly possible, how can they avoid the endless stream of coverage, the interviews Harry has granted about the book, the Netflix documentary that came in December, the nonstop stream of information about Harry and Meghan that the two of them have flung out into the world? You close the book with the queasy sense that in reading it, you’ve been prying into something deathly private, that probably this book should not exist at all.

It’s as though Harry, who hates the press and its constant invasion of his privacy, has had to become press himself in order to finally bring the emotional force of his argument home. Because reading Spare , it’s hard to avoid the thought that we never had any right to these people’s lives at all.

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Prince Harry’s Open Book

With its relentless candor, spare reveals more than its author may have intended..

Portrait of Claire Lampen

After watching two Oprah specials, reading various profiles, listening to assorted podcasts, and streaming a six-hour Netflix confessional, I did not expect Prince Harry’s tell-all memoir to tell me anything its author hadn’t many times before. It’s true that Harry’s familiar grievances — the myriad intrusions of the tabloid press, the royal family’s willful indifference to racist attacks on its first biracial member, and the unending beef over a child’s wedding attire — all get space in Spare , but there is so much more. Thanks to a leak , anyone with an internet connection now knows that Harry once suffered frostnip on his “todger” (which is circumcised) and that William, allegedly a Suits superfan, once threw him on a dog bowl during an argument. They may have learned how Harry lost his virginity and how many people he killed in Afghanistan. Still, none of these salacious details prepared me for the experience of reading the book. Or, in my case, listening to the audiobook: nearly 16 hours of Harry’s animated delivery, at once sympathetic, angry, exasperating, funny, and persistently self-justifying. Spare is a mess of contradictions, but as an insight into the royal reality, it is as singular as it is strange.

Opening with the memory of a meeting with his father and brother after Prince Philip’s funeral, Spare quickly spells out at least one of Harry’s motives for all this talking: He wants to explain, to his family and presumably the world, exactly why he stepped back from senior duties in early 2020. Over more than 400 pages, he describes how the British press drove him out while the palace did nothing to help. You’ve heard this before but not with the unvarnished fury he lets rip here. The editor who, he says, invented the 2002 report about his weed smoking? “An infected pustule on the arse of humanity, plus a shit excuse for a journalist.” Rupert Murdoch, the owner of the newspaper that ran it? “Just to the right of the Taliban” in terms of his politics. “The paps had always been grotesque people, but as I reached maturity they were worse,” he — or, more exactly, ghostwriter J.R. Moehringer, who has been called a “ skeleton exhumer ” and has rendered Harry’s incandescent rage with scalding clarity — writes. “They were more emboldened, more radicalized, just as young men in Iraq had been radicalized. Their mullahs were editors, the same ones who’d vowed to do better after Mummy died.”

The death of his mother, Princess Diana, is the tragedy that frames Harry’s life. His memory of his father, King Charles III, breaking the news was the first of a handful of Diana-related episodes that made me tear up. Even though he witnessed her burial, Harry says he remained unable to accept her death until he was 23 — nearly ten years in which he sustained the sincere conviction that she had gone into hiding to escape the press and would send for him any day now. When reality sets in, he’s already settled on his villain: the British tabloids. He recalls how the paparazzi followed him everywhere, stalking him and splashing his worst moments across front pages. They hacked his phone, tracked his loved ones, and apparently destroyed every romantic relationship he had before Meghan Markle. It takes a toll on his family life too: Harry repeatedly accuses certain family members of trading damaging stories about him, the disposable spare to his brother’s heir, to tabloid journalists in order to improve their own image. After serving in the army, he develops agoraphobia, panic attacks, and an acute sense of loneliness seemingly fueled by a distrust of those closest to him. As his brother and friends are getting married and having kids, he is still drying the TK Maxx (it’s “TK” in Britain) clothes his bodyguards helped him pick out on a radiator, eating takeout alone over his father’s sink.

So you feel for him even as you’re exasperated by him because, for all his claims to the moral high ground, Spare ’s Harry keeps score, and he is petty. Once again, he’s litigating an exhaustive list of tabloid headlines written about him or Meghan and wondering how things might have turned out differently if the palace had issued a statement saying it actually allowed Meghan to wear ripped jeans to some event. He gets granular in his grievances, offering up an anecdote about his sister-in-law’s reluctance to share lip gloss with his wife as if it were a character statement. Where Harry’s pettiness really shines is in the classic older-sibling-younger-sibling stuff. In Harry’s telling, the future king is envious of his little brother’s relative freedom and purpose. He is always yelling at Harry: to shave his wedding beard because he, Prince William, isn’t allowed to wear one; to let him “have” Africa because rhinos and elephants are his thing. According to Harry, it’s William who drove the heir-versus-spare competition, but the sense of rivalry seems to run both ways. Consider this extended aside about William’s waning hotness: “I looked at Willy, really looked at him, maybe for the first time since we were boys. I took it all in: his familiar scowl, which had always been his default in dealings with me; his alarming baldness, more advanced than my own; his famous resemblance to Mummy, which was fading with time. With age.”

In a recent interview with Anderson Cooper, Harry refuted the idea that this passage, with all its digs at William’s physical appearance, was “cutting at all,” which, come on. But when he is challenged, Harry often counters with Actually I never said that — another example of the press twisting my words . Over the weekend, when ITV’s Tom Bradby began to ask him about the allegations of racism Harry and Meghan made in their Oprah interview, Harry cut him off. “No, I didn’t,” he said, refusing to concede Bradby’s point that a member of the royal family raising concerns about baby Archie’s skin color might be understood as “essentially racist” and instead launching into a convoluted explanation of unconscious bias. (Interestingly, there is no mention of the incident in the book). After years of tabloid lies, of course Harry would be sensitive to inaccurate reporting. But he comes across as so defensive that it’s hard not to agree with Charles when he urges Harry, “My darling boy, just don’t read it.” (Unfortunately, if this week’s interview with Stephen Colbert is any indication, Harry still hasn’t entirely embraced that advice.)

Throughout Harry and Meghan’s post-royal productions, their lack of self-awareness can make even their legitimate complaints seem grating. Spare is no different. In an effort to (maybe?) underscore his relatability, Harry recalls footmen bringing him and William their dinner under silver domes — but even though it “sounds posh,” the food was just fish fingers. He complains of life in a cage even as he jets all over the world at his leisure: back and forth to Botswana, to the North Pole and the South Pole, to a luxury suite in Las Vegas with the lads and a multiday party at Courtney Cox’s house. He worries about his dad cutting him off in his mid-30s, and while he acknowledges the absurdity of that predicament, he also balks at dipping into the substantial inheritance left to him by his mother. As royal residences go, his bachelor pad in Kensington Palace may have been less than regal, but it is still a free apartment in one of London’s most expensive neighborhoods. And then there is the fundamental paradox of his choosing to sell and resell his story in the first place. Harry may welcome the opportunity to tell all, in his own words, rather than having to rely on unnamed sources as a cipher. At the same time, he is making a lucrative business of doing so. He is rumored to have received a $20 million advance for Spare , which is currently breaking sales records . Of that, he has given just under $2 million to charity.

And yet, in spite of his blind spots, he is so candid about so much, and that makes Spare an incomparably bonkers read. Here is a prince in my ear, telling me about the shopping bag full of weed he smoked and peeing his pants on a sailboat and applying Elizabeth Arden face cream to his penis. He is telling me about the effect of magnesium on his bowels and how, when he was tripping, the moon seemed to prophesize Meghan’s entrance into his life. He is doing it all without a discernible sense of ego, as if I had asked and as if these were normal biographical details to share. Countless movies, TV shows, and books have attempted to reconstruct the grinding interior of this family’s existence, but none of them has approached the sheer wackiness of this inside account. Royal life looks worse, but also so much weirder, than we could have known.

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The Ransom Center is closed on December 31 and January 1.

London Review of Books International Fellowship 2024-25

Beginning October 23, 2023, the Harry Ransom Center welcomes applications in partnership with the London Review of Books (LRB) for an inaugural international fellowship that requires on-site consultation of the Ransom Center's LRB Collection.

The application deadline is January 15, 2024.

The program, a collaboration between the London Review of Books and the Harry Ransom Center, supports research and extensive consultation of the London Review of Books materials and related collections. This opportunity offers one scholar, journalist, historian, educator, artist, or other professional from anywhere in the world the chance to support their research or creative work with a fellowship of one to three months, including a stipend of $3,500 per month (and an additional one-time stipend of $500 for fellows traveling internationally). Research and engagement with London Review of Books archive, potentially alongside other collections at the Center, is required. The residency for the 2024-2025 fellowship must be completed anytime between September 1, 2024 and May 31, 2025.

About the LRB Archive

The archive of the London Review of Books at the Center is comprised of two main categories of material: editorial files relating to the compilation of every issue of the magazine, published 24 times a year since September 1979 (over 1000 issues in total); and year-by-year correspondence concerning the commissioning of the reviews, essays and poems that make up each issue, along with other aspects of the paper's daily business. These reflect the LRB' s growth, over the years, from a team of four working on an insert for the New York Review of Books , into one of the UK's leading cultural journals and literary brands.

Particular strengths of the archive, which are therefore particularly suggestive of research uses, include:

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For more on the structure of the collection and its most high-profile writers, please review this description and preliminary inventory . A detailed introduction to, and background notes on, some highlights of the archive can be found in London Review of Books: An Incomplete History (Faber, 2019) published to mark the 40th anniversary of the paper, including a selection of high-resolution scans. Sam Kinchin-Smith, who compiled that volume, gave a lecture to the British Studies Seminar at the University of Texas in 2020, about the project and the LRB archive, which can be heard here: . Please also take the time to learn about the Ransom Center's Materials Use Policies .

Applicants may contact Sam Kinchin-Smith or Harry Ransom Center Reference with specific inquiries about the LRB collection.

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Applicants must have a demonstrable record of publication and/or achievement founded on, or that will clearly be further developed through, archival research. A complete application consists of a three-page proposal and one letter of recommendation as outlined below. These materials must be emailed to [email protected] by the deadline, January 15, 2024, before noon CST .

We ask that the three-page proposal be in English and submitted as a single PDF file. Files longer than three pages will not be accepted. Required: Each page should include your last name in the top-right corner and be formatted with one-inch margins and a sans-serif or serif font size of 11 pt.

Page One The first page of your proposal should provide your name, organizational affiliation (if you have one), project title, and requested duration of residency, followed by a summary of the proposed research project. Keep in mind that research topics and their significance should be thoroughly explained and placed in the context of the larger field of study. Please also describe the anticipated result of the project (e.g. article, book, edited volume, film, or other work).

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Divided brothers? Britain’s press pounces on Harry’s fleeting visit.

london review of books harry

A previous version of this article included a photo that misidentified King Charles III. The photo has been replaced.

LONDON — It’s a tale of two brothers. William, nursing a sick wife, dutifully heads back to the royal front line in the selfless tradition of his late grandmother. Harry, a rogue relative on a fleeting trip home, is shunned by a family he sold out.

Or so the British press would have you believe.

Prince Harry’s 26-hour trip to the United Kingdom from California filled the front pages of British newspapers on Thursday, as tabloid columns were quick to paint a portrait of a divided house of Windsor and a modern-day Cain and Abel, in the wake of news of their father’s cancer diagnosis.

Harry was photographed arriving at London’s Heathrow Airport on Tuesday and swiftly taking off again Wednesday back to Los Angeles, where he lives with wife, Meghan, Duchess of Sussex, and their two children. British media reported a meeting of under 45 minutes with his father, King Charles III , at Clarence House, before the king took a helicopter with Queen Camilla to his Sandringham Estate to begin his medical treatment.

King Charles III diagnosed with cancer, postpones public duties

There was no meeting reported with his elder brother, Prince William.

Buckingham Palace, Kensington Palace and a spokesperson for Harry issued no comment to The Washington Post on Thursday.

One British media pundit called Harry “disloyal” and highlighted that he appeared not to stay overnight at a royal property. “The Duke of Sussex stayed the night in a hotel, like so many other American tourists, because in truth, that is all he is now.”

Another right-leaning show said the estranged royal had been snubbed by his relatives and asked: “Who was the visit for? Was it for Harry? Was it for the king? Or was it for Netflix?” referring to his 2022 fly-on-the-wall documentary .

Harry, 39, remains an emotive figure in Britain. Many feel betrayed by his decision to “step back” from senior royal duties in 2020 and move across the Atlantic, while others cheer his liberation from ancient duties and hail what they see as rare royal transparency.

An IPSOS poll conducted last year after the publication of Harry’s memoir “Spare” found William and his wife, Catherine, the Princess of Wales, among the most popular members of the royal household with the British public. About 61 percent said they held a favorable opinion of Prince William, while just under a quarter, 23 percent, said the same for his younger brother.

Angela Goodman, a royal fan who visited Clarence House — one of the official residences of the king in London — on Tuesday after learning of his diagnosis, told The Post that she was “absolutely heartbroken” at the medical news.

Goodman said that at one point in her life, she loved “Prince Harry to bits” and “would have done anything for him,” but that the recent royal rift had changed her opinion of him for the worse.

Instead, her hopes now lie with the heir to the throne, William, who she predicted would “do his very best” to take on more royal duties amid his father’s ill health. Goodman worried, however, that he “won’t be able to do as much,” while also tending to Catherine, who recently underwent abdominal surgery and is not expected to return to her official duties before Easter, and their three children.

The British press in particular have lingering hard feelings for Harry, not the least for his role in high-profile lawsuits against them. He has also spoken out widely about his critical feelings toward the press, citing their intrusion and at times racism directed at his wife.

But it is the contrast with his brother that seems to be the current media focus.

Expect to see a lot more of Prince William after father’s cancer diagnosis

Images of William, 41, were splashed across front-pages Thursday showing his return to front-line royal duties. He began his working day in a military uniform handing out medals at a ceremony at Windsor Castle. In the evening, he attended a gala dinner in London as patron of the London Air Ambulance charity, alongside actor Tom Cruise. There, William waved to people outside the venue and said that royal family members “really appreciate everyone’s kind messages” for his dad.

The Sun tabloid newspaper featured an image of the heir alongside the “Top Gun” actor with a headline: “Top Son.”

🇬🇧 Top Son ▫Wills thanks well-wishers for supporting his Pa and Kate as he joins Tom Cruise at charity do ▫ @MattSunRoyal ▫ 🇬🇧 #frontpagestoday #UK @TheSun — 𝙵𝚛𝚘𝚗𝚝 𝙿𝚊𝚐𝚎𝚜 𝚃𝚘𝚍𝚊𝚢 📰 (@ukpapers) February 8, 2024

Publicist and royal commentator Mark Borkowski said the contrast in media treatment showed “just how deep the hatred of Harry is from the British media.” He said it was “unfair” to suggest his visit had been a “PR exercise” and that more likely, like everyone else, he was “shocked” by news of his father’s ill health and wanted to be with him.

Harry’s lightning-fast U.K. visit appears to suggest he has not healed a rift with his brother that he outlined in his book and high-profile media interviews.

In his 2021 interview with Oprah, Harry described his relationship with his brother as one of “space at the moment,” and since then their public interactions have been limited to funerals and coronations, with them largely pictured standing apart.

Harry has claimed their wives have had disagreements and that he had been left out of a royal plane ride as Queen Elizabeth II was dying in Scotland. Passages in his memoir also outlined an alleged physical fight between the brothers during an argument in 2019 in which he said William called Meghan “difficult” and “rude.” William and other royals have not publicly commented on the book.

Borkowski acknowledged that Harry’s “visceral” autobiography had probably “caused deep wounds between the family,” but suggested that the royals could in the future use more hands on deck, possibly including Harry.

It would take a lot to “rehabilitate Harry after all the disruption he has caused at the heart of the royal family,” he said, adding that “Harry could play a significant role but it’s a long way back to that place.”

Karla Adam and Jennifer Hassan contributed to this report.

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london review of books harry

Prince Harry Leaves London, 24 Hours After Arriving

It was a very quick trip to see his father, King Charles.

prince harry court case enters final day

Multiple outlets have reported that Harry stayed in a hotel last night, rather than a royal residence. (He and Meghan Markle moved out of their Frogmore Cottage home last year at the request of the King.)

Yesterday, Prince Harry spent around 30 to 45 minutes with his father at Clarence House , before Charles, along with Camilla, departed for Buckingham Palace to take a helicopter to Sandringham. You can see the King's helicopter taking off here:

Prince Harry and his father have had a tumultuous relationship in recent years; upon the release of his memoir, Spare , Harry confirmed he was not currently speaking to his father , or his brother, Prince William. Yet, in his memoir, he writes lovingly of Charles , and acknowledges his father's shortcomings.

"He had trouble communicating, trouble listening, trouble being intimate face-to-face," Harry writes. "On occasion, after a long multi-course dinner, I’d walk upstairs and find a letter on my pillow. The letter would say how proud he was of me for something I’d done or accomplished. I’d smile, place it under my pillow, but also wonder why he hadn’t said this moments ago, while seated directly across from me."

britain royals health

It's unclear if Harry saw any other family members while he was back in the UK. A source confirmed to T&C that Prince William had no plans to see Harry while he was visiting. Today, the Prince of Wales held his first public engagement since his wife Kate Middleton's abdominal surgery .

Prince Harry's very quick trip is in line with his visits since moving to California. In September 2023, he returned briefly for the WellChild Awards before going to Germany, and he was in town for less than 48 hours for his father's coronation in May 2023 .

Next week, Harry and Meghan are set to travel to Canada to celebrate one year to go until the 2025 Invictus Games in Vancouver and Whistler. The Sussexes will spend three days carrying out engagements in advance of the first-ever winter edition of the sporting competition.

preview for Prince Harry and Meghan Markle’s California Life

Emily Burack (she/her) is the Senior News Editor for Town & Country, where she covers entertainment, culture, the royals, and a range of other subjects. Before joining T&C, she was the deputy managing editor at Hey Alma , a Jewish culture site. Follow her @emburack on Twitter and Instagram .

@media(min-width: 40.625rem){.css-1jdielu:before{margin:0.625rem 0.625rem 0;width:3.5rem;-webkit-filter:invert(17%) sepia(72%) saturate(710%) hue-rotate(181deg) brightness(97%) contrast(97%);filter:invert(17%) sepia(72%) saturate(710%) hue-rotate(181deg) brightness(97%) contrast(97%);height:1.5rem;content:'';display:inline-block;-webkit-transform:scale(-1, 1);-moz-transform:scale(-1, 1);-ms-transform:scale(-1, 1);transform:scale(-1, 1);background-repeat:no-repeat;}.loaded .css-1jdielu:before{background-image:url(/_assets/design-tokens/townandcountrymag/static/images/diamond-header-design-element.80fb60e.svg);}}@media(min-width: 64rem){.css-1jdielu:before{margin:0 0.625rem 0.25rem;}} Royal Family News @media(min-width: 40.625rem){.css-128xfoy:before{margin:0.625rem 0.625rem 0;width:3.5rem;-webkit-filter:invert(17%) sepia(72%) saturate(710%) hue-rotate(181deg) brightness(97%) contrast(97%);filter:invert(17%) sepia(72%) saturate(710%) hue-rotate(181deg) brightness(97%) contrast(97%);height:1.5rem;content:'';display:inline-block;background-repeat:no-repeat;}.loaded .css-128xfoy:before{background-image:url(/_assets/design-tokens/townandcountrymag/static/images/diamond-header-design-element.80fb60e.svg);}}@media(min-width: 64rem){.css-128xfoy:before{margin:0 0.625rem 0.25rem;}}

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Who am i prepared to kill, otto saumarez smith , richard j. evans , mark bostridge , michael bentley , yih lerh huang , paul brown , steve smith , charles mahoney , peter hayes , michael holland , olav martin kvern , chris sansom, alan bennett, schism:  china, america and the fracturing of the global trading system  by paul blustein. mcgill-queen’s, 356 pp., £27.99, september 2019, 978 1 928096 85 6 superpower showdown:  how the battle between trump and xi threatens a new cold war  by bob davis and lingling wei. harper, 480 pp., £25, june 2020, 978 0 06 295305 6 trade wars are class wars:  how rising inequality distorts the global economy and threatens international peace  by matthew c. klein and michael pettis. yale, 288 pp., £20, june 2020, 978 0 300 24417 5 the new class war:  saving democracy from the metropolitan elite  by michael lind. atlantic, 224 pp., £14.99, february 2020, 978 1 78649 955 4, hazel v. carby, peine forte et dure, frances stonor saunders, the suitcase, patrick cockburn, short cuts: thanington without, randall kennedy, the second founding:  how the civil war and reconstruction remade the constitution  by eric foner. norton, 288 pp., £18.99, october 2019, 978 0 393 65257 4, linda colley, outsourcing empire:  how company-states made the modern world  by andrew phillips and j.c. sharman. princeton, 253 pp., £25, june 2020, 978 0 691 20351 5, anne wagner, neal ascherson, a schoolmaster’s war:  harry rée, british agent in the french resistance  edited by jonathan rée. yale, 204 pp., £14.99, march 2020, 978 0 300 24566 0, n.a.m. rodger, sons of the waves:  the common seaman in the heroic age of sail 1740-1840  by stephen taylor. yale, 490 pp., £20, april, 978 0 300 24571 4, robin robertson, poem: ‘near gleann nam fiadh’, clare bucknell, you people  by nikita lalwani. viking, 231 pp., £12.99, april, 978 0 241 40953 4, michael wood, counterfactuals:  paths of the might have been  by christopher prendergast. bloomsbury, 257 pp., £19.99, february 2019, 978 1 350 09009 5 telling it like it wasn’t:  the counterfactual imagination in history and fiction  by catherine gallagher. chicago, 359 pp., £26.50, january 2018, 978 0 226 51241 9, richard shone, forster in cambridge, james lomax, diary: in ashgabat, download the lrb app.

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Prince Harry Flies Back to L.A. After Visiting Dad King Charles

The Duke of Sussex was in London for a day following the monarch’s cancer diagnosis

preview for Etiquette Lessons We've Learned From the Royals

The Duke of Sussex flew into London early this week to check on his father, King Charles III, after the monarch was diagnosed with a form of cancer , identified during a surgical procedure to treat his benign enlarged prostate in late January. Harry landed at Heathrow Airport on Tuesday and headed straight to Clarence House, one of the king’s royal residences in London, where Charles was staying with wife Queen Camilla.

Harry spent about an hour with his dad, Bazaar learned. On Tuesday afternoon, the king and Camilla were seen leaving Clarence House to return to Buckingham Palace. The couple had been at the king’s Sandringham country estate, but returned to London on Monday so he could begin his outpatient cancer treatment .

“The duke did speak with his father about his diagnosis,” a source close to the Sussexes told Bazaar ahead of Harry’s flight to London. “He will be traveling to the U.K. to see His Majesty in the coming days.”

A source added that there were no plans for Harry to meet with his estranged brother, Prince William . And today, as Harry flies back home, William is busy with his royal duties. As Bazaar reported, the Prince of Wales took his father’s place this morning to host an investiture ceremony at Windsor Castle . His stepping in for the monarch comes as Buckingham Palace announced King Charles’s public engagements have been postponed during his treatment for his condition.

Rosa Sanchez is the senior news editor at Harper's Bazaar, working on news as it relates to entertainment, fashion, and culture. Previously, she was a news editor at ABC News and, prior to that, a managing editor of celebrity news at American Media. She has also written features for Rolling Stone, Teen Vogue, Forbes, and The Hollywood Reporter, among other outlets. 

The Latest from Your Favorite Royals

britains prince william, prince of wales arrives on the red carpet at the bafta british academy film awards at the royal festival hall, southbank centre, in london, on february 18, 2024 photo by adrian dennis pool afp photo by adrian dennispoolafp via getty images

Meghan Dons a Camel Coat for Wheelchair Curling

vancouver, canada february 16 prince harry, duke of sussex and meghan, duchess of sussex attend the invictus games one year to go winter training camp at hillcrest community centre on february 16, 2024 in vancouver, canada photo by karwai tangwireimage

Meghan Stuns in Green for Dinner With Harry

london, england june 03 meghan, duchess of sussex and prince harry, duke of sussex attend the national service of thanksgiving at st pauls cathedral on june 03, 2022 in london, england the platinum jubilee of elizabeth ii is being celebrated from june 2 to june 5, 2022, in the uk and commonwealth to mark the 70th anniversary of the accession of queen elizabeth ii on 6 february 1952 photo by karwai tangwireimage

Can Royal Family Members Have Dual Citizenship?

meghan markle and prince harry

Meghan Wears Two Blue Looks in Canada With Harry

cape town, south africa september 25 prince harry, duke of sussex, meghan, duchess of sussex and their baby son archie mountbatten windsor meet archbishop desmond tutu and his daughter thandeka tutu gxashe at the desmond leah tutu legacy foundation during their royal tour of south africa on september 25, 2019 in cape town, south africa photo by poolsamir husseinwireimage

Harry Says Life With Meghan and Kids Is “Amazing”

manchester, england september 04 prince harry visits the nhs manchester resilience hub on september 4, 2017 in manchester, england photo by chris jackson poolgetty images

Prince Harry Breaks Silence on Dad’s Cancer

whistler, british columbia february 14 prince harry, duke of sussex and meghan, duchess of sussex attend the invictus games one year to go event on february 14, 2024 in whistler, canada photo by karwai tangwireimage

Harry and Meghan Launch the 2025 Invictus Games

johannesburg, south africa october 01 meghan, duchess of sussex visits the university of johannesburg on october 01, 2019 in johannesburg, south africa this is part of the duke and duchess of sussexs royal tour to south africa photo by karwai tangwireimage

Duchess Meghan Nods to Old Lifestyle Blog, the Tig

meghan with her arms crossed

Duchess Meghan Releases Stunning New Portrait

the hague, netherlands april 16 embargoed for publication in uk newspapers until 24 hours after create date and time meghan, duchess of sussex attends the land rover driving challenge, on day 1 of the invictus games 2020 at zuiderpark on april 16, 2022 in the hague, netherlands photo by max mumbyindigogetty images

Duchess Meghan Strikes a Major Podcast Deal

a group of women cooking

Duchess Meghan Puts On an Apron for Cooking Night

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Hegel gets real

Terry eagleton.

Hegel’s dissatisfaction with the revolutions he surveys comes down in almost every instance to their otherworldliness or estrangement from reality, whether we are speaking of Jesus or Robespierre, ancient Athenian philosophers or modern Kantians. 

For Hegel, the actual contains the possible, so that you can plunge into it with no fear of losing sight of a desirable alternative. You don’t need to tack some arbitrary utopian dimension onto what exists, since what exists already secretes within itself the seeds of what ought to be.

What now for Ukraine?

W hen ​ General Valery Zaluzhny, then Ukraine’s senior military commander, spoke in November of a stalemate, it was widely taken in the West as a signal that the war was frozen in all but name: that Ukraine and Russia had reached their fighting limits, that Russia could invade no further and Ukraine could liberate no more. Ukraine’s southern summer counteroffensive had fallen far...

The intermittence of Western arms money is not the Ukrainian military’s only problem as it organises to do three things: hold Russia at bay this year, push it back in the medium term, and create an impregnable defence for an indefinite future truce. Alongside the lack of money to fund weapons is the lack of weapons to buy.

On Mary Magdalene

Marina warner.

A lmost ​ every woman in the story of Jesus is called Mary. Sometimes the writers of the gospels got round this by adding a patronymic or a husband (Mary Salome, Mary of Cleophas, Mary Jacobi). The Virgin Mary has a stable identity as the mother of Jesus, but at least one document (attributed to Cyril of Jerusalem) bundled all the Marys into one. More commonly, the Marys have combined and then...

Devotees often exult in the stripping of her beauty and her wealth; she is imagined as a woman of substance, who owned property in Magdala (hence her name), and when she repents and gives all this up, her reduction becomes the source of great satisfaction to the worthy men who love her in spite of – or because of – their general suspicion of and contempt for women.

Sudden Death Syndrome

Whether they killed him quickly or slowly, there is no doubt who is responsible for Aleksei Navalny’s demise. Yet even though his was a death many times foretold, the news that came on 16 February was still a profound shock, and a demoralising one for Putin’s opponents.

‘The Zone of Interest’

Michael wood.

J onathan Glazer’s ​ Zone of Interest seems stately at first, even stolid, and a bit too restrained to raise real questions. Once it’s over we realise that its discretion is part of a careful, risky plan. ‘Based on the novel by Martin Amis’, as a credit line says, the film converts a cruel virtuoso performance of literary voices into a sort of belated act of espionage....

It’s not that the locals are in denial about what is going on in the camp. Everyone seems to have incorporated the horrors as real but ignorable aspects of regular existence. Höss and Hedwig not only tolerate Auschwitz. It fails to touch their happiness in any way.

Florence Sutcliffe-Braithwaite

In the 1980s, Alex Comfort said that anarchism had been the ‘background to all my thinking’; but although The Joy of Sex , his most influential work by far, centred the individual and individuals’ responsibility to one another, it did little to seed anarchist ideas. Perhaps if it had been more radical it wouldn’t have sold more than twelve million copies.

Alex Comfort became best known for The Joy of Se x (1972). This annoyed him. It was his 31st book. As well as a sexologist, he was a poet, novelist, doctor, biologist, gerontologist, anarchist, scientific humanist, public intellectual, and activist in the pacifist and anti-nuclear movements. Even as a child, Comfort was a polymath.

In the latest issue

22 february 2024.

  • Marina Warner: On Mary Magdalene
  • Terry Eagleton: Hegel gets real
  • James Meek: What now for Ukraine?
  • Aziz Huq: Short Cuts
  • Mark Ford: ‘Lunar Solo’
  • Barbara Everett: Henry and Hamlet
  • Diarmaid MacCulloch: Jesuit Methods
  • Laleh Khalili: Red Sea Attacks
  • James Vincent: Automata
  • Ben Walker: On VAR
  • Ferdinand Mount: Fans and Un-Fans
  • Florence Sutcliffe-Braithwaite: Mr Sex
  • Francis Gooding: At the Imperial War Museum
  • Lorraine Daston: Linnaeus makes the rules
  • Colin Kidd: Constitutional Dramas
  • Michael Wood: At the Movies
  • Lola Seaton: On A.K. Blakemore
  • Keiron Pim: Diary

Think Differently

Subscribe to the LRB – perfect for anyone with an interest in history, politics, literature and the arts.

Jesuit Methods

Diarmaid macculloch.

I n the mid-18th century ​ an exceptionally adventurous European traveller might have got as far as a desert region in what is now Arizona, to be rewarded with hospitality from the presiding priest in the stately local mission church. There was likely to have been chocolate to drink, transported from Yucatán some two thousand miles to the south, served in Fr Philipp Segesser von...

What​ was this Society for which Pope Paul III provided a charter? It was not a religious order, though it is often styled as such. Its members were neither monks nor friars. Its self-descriptor as a Societas aligned it with the ‘companies’ or devotional confraternities of priests and laity in late medieval Italy.

Morality without the Metaphysics

Jonathan rée.

None of us can fully disengage from morality: even if we think of ourselves as free spirits we still want our lives to make a good story. But many are foolish enough to be impressed by the cynical bravado of Brecht’s Macheath: Erst kommt das Fressen, dann kommt die Moral (‘Feeding comes first, morals must wait’) – as if morality were a luxury that need not concern us, like fast cars or a top hat.

Alasdair MacIntyre drew a conclusion he has stuck to ever since: that philosophy takes time. Instead of choosing an opinion that appeals to you and forsaking all others, you need to take on different arguments and give them time to sort themselves out.

Losing San Francisco

Rebecca solnit.

S eeing cars ​ with no human inside move through San Francisco’s streets is eerie enough as a pedestrian, but when I’m on my bicycle I often find myself riding alongside them, and from that vantage point you catch the ghostly spectacle of a steering wheel turning without a hand. Since August, driverless cars have been available as taxis hailed through apps but I more often see...

I don’t know whether these billionaires know what a city is, but I do know that they have laid their hands on the city that’s been my home since 1980 and used their wealth to undermine its diversity and affordability, demonise its poor, turn its politicians into puppets and push its politics to the right. 

On A.K. Blakemore

Lola seaton.

T he narrator ​ of A.K. Blakemore’s first novel, The Manningtree Witches (2021), is a 19-year-old woman called Rebecca West. She lives with her tough, rowdy mother, the Beldam West, and their cat, Vinegar Tom, in a cramped cottage on the outskirts of Manningtree, a small port town in north Essex where the Stour widens into an estuary. Rebecca and the Beldam usually get by doing laundry...

The Manningtree Witches and The Glutton are both driven by an appetite for the ‘juiciest’ words – for ‘how they feel when you say them, or look at them’. But if a writer seems more invested in verbal effects than in what she is communicating, disillusionment sets in. I came to doubt that Blakemore was focused on what she was telling me.

Trump’s Indictments

I n ​ the 1920 US presidential election, Eugene Debs, or Convict 9653, won 913,693 votes while serving a ten-year sentence in a federal prison in Atlanta. ‘Under the influence of this unreasoning mob psychology,’ the editors of the New York Times complained, an ‘acknowledged criminal is nightly applauded as loudly as many of the candidates for the presidency who have won...

Trump’s misdeeds have been amply documented through two impeachment proceedings, extensive congressional investigations, Mueller’s final report and endless news coverage. Perhaps the liberal principle of ‘innocent until proven guilty’ is at work. If so, it is having distinctly illiberal effects.

In Mostyska

I n spring ​ 2019 I stood in a meadow outside the small Ukrainian town of Mostyska, squinting at a transliteration of the Mourner’s Kaddish on my phone. A local farmer had directed my guide towards a couple of stubs of rock, the only remnants of dozens of gravestones that had long ago been removed for use as building materials. Brown hens pecked at the grass. It was impossible to tell...

It was impossible to tell where my ancestors were buried or the location of the mass grave containing five hundred of the town’s Jews, shot in 1942. But few descendants of the Ostjuden who visit Eastern Europe in search of their roots expect more than this; a good result is finding that a supermarket hasn’t been built on top of your relatives.

Henry and Hamlet

Barbara everett.

I ntroducing ​ his text of Hamlet in The Riverside Shakespeare , Frank Kermode calls it ‘the first great tragedy Europe had produced for two thousand years’, and adds, as if conceding to the long academic stress on its highly ‘problematic’ character: ‘how Shakespeare came to write it is, of course, a mystery on which it is useless to speculate.’ As a...

A work of art is what it is, even more than what it says. The only real way of seeing how Hamlet differs from Henry is to perceive the great difference in the plays that hold them, a mature tragedy and an early history.

Constitutional Dramas

M ost historians ​ nowadays are suspicious of ‘constitutional history’, in part because they’re uneasy about its associations with the Anglocentric arrogance of what is sometimes called Whig history, a self-satisfied celebration of England’s relatively smooth progress towards liberal outcomes. The historical reaction against Whig triumphalism also exposed the...

The peculiarities of the British constitution mean that it requires the combined input of the disciplines of law, politics and history – each with its own priorities, sensitivities and hinterlands of learning – to make sense of its practices. But the field has been vacated by most historians.

O n ​ the baseball fields of America in the first half of the 20th century Bill Klem was the law. As an umpire between 1905 and 1941 he worked eighteen World Series. His nickname was the Old Arbitrator, and the decisions he made were absolute. He is said to have been the first umpire to communicate to the crowd in the stands as well as the players on the field. He didn’t just announce...

Despite the mistakes, video assistant refereeing works. A 2020 study showed that overall decision accuracy improved with the use of VAR from an already high 92.1 per cent to 98.3 per cent. So what’s all the fuss about? Part of the problem is that although the right decisions are being reached more often, it doesn’t feel like they are.

From the blog

Whether they killed him quickly or slowly, there is no doubt who is responsible for Aleksei Navalny’s demise. Yet even though his was a death  . . .

Think about the Nation

Skye arundhati thomas.

The Bollywood actor Kangana Ranaut visited the Israeli embassy in Delhi at the end of October for a photo op. ‘Like we deserve a Bharat dedicated  . . .

Necessity or Compulsion?

Eliane glaser.

I have never owned a smartphone. The man in the shop couldn’t understand my refusal. ‘You get one free with your plan,’ he told me. I share  . . .

Harry Stopes

On Friday morning, three dozen people gathered outside the Federal Ministry for Economic Co-operation and Development in Berlin to demand a permanent  . . .

Eyes on Gaza

Selma dabbagh.

At the end of last month I went to an event at the Photographer’s Gallery, where the grandson (and namesake) of the Armenian Gazan photographer  . . .

Sous la plage, les archives

Richard vinen.

Le Roy Ladurie’s fascination with what he referred to in his inaugural lecture at the Collège de France in 1973 as the ‘immobile’ history  . . .

Closed Loops

Mark papers.

I had the feeling, sitting down to my marking after the Christmas break, that I was an unwilling participant in a version of Turing’s game  . . .

Ecuador’s Internal Armed Conflict

Forrest hylton.

Considered since the 1980s to be a peaceful oasis compared to its neighbours Colombia and Peru – in part because of comprehensive land reform  . . .


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Prince Harry Ends U.K. Trip Without Meeting Prince William

On a whirlwind trip to London, Harry met briefly with his father, King Charles III, who has cancer, but did not visit his older brother, the heir to the throne.

  • Share full article

Prince William and Prince Harry conferring while wearing dark suits.

By Jesus Jiménez

Prince Harry did not meet with his brother, Prince William, during a roughly 24-hour trip to Britain after Buckingham Palace announced that their father had cancer , an indication that relations between the siblings remain tense.

Harry, 39, flew to London on Tuesday and visited his father, King Charles III, for a short time, but did not meet with William, 41, the heir to the throne, according to a person familiar with their schedules.

The younger prince was seen at Heathrow Airport on Wednesday and was expected to return to the United States soon, the BBC reported . The king’s eldest son resumed his duties as the Prince of Wales, carrying out an honors ceremony at Windsor Castle and attending a charity fund-raiser.

It was unknown what Harry and King Charles, 75, discussed during a visit that lasted between 30 and 45 minutes at Clarence House, the king’s residence in London.

Ashley Hansen, the global press secretary for Prince Harry and his wife, Meghan, declined to comment about the brothers’ relationship or Harry’s trip to London.

The brothers’ relationship has long been closely watched by the British press, going back to their shared grief over the death of their mother, Princess Diana, and that scrutiny has heightened since Harry and Meghan moved to California in 2020. The brothers did not sit in the same row at their father’s coronation in May, several months after Harry published a memoir that aired anecdotes about the intensely private family’s life.

Harry was direct about his relationship with his brother in a 2022 Netflix documentary, “Harry & Meghan,” which details the couple’s life from when they began dating to their withdrawal from their royal duties.

In the documentary, Harry suggested that William’s press office planted negative stories about Meghan, furthering a rift between the siblings.

“The saddest part of it,” Harry said, “was this wedge created between myself and my brother so that he’s now on the institution side.”

Mark Landler contributed reporting from London.

Jesus Jiménez covers breaking news, online trends and other subjects. He is based in New York City. More about Jesus Jiménez

london review of books harry

How I used to love and now hate the London Review of Books

Speaking words of wisdom, LRB

I would read the London Review of Books from front to back. I had to read it all, from front to back. I couldn’t miss any part of what I then saw as the absolute requirement of reading the London Review of Books and absorbing all of the information contained in the London Review of Book s (excluding classifieds and incidental advertising about books, copywriters, book-based dating etc). 

I certainly couldn’t dip in and out of the London Review of Books . The London Review of Books told me, so I thought, everything that I needed to know. The best people would provide me with the best information about what I needed to know. It was a joy and my mind expanded and my taste developed and I became a refined intellectual.

I couldn’t read fast enough to keep up

This reading of each and every London Review of Books ended up making me very anxious ; or perhaps, my latent anxiety overwhelmed my joy of reading the London Review of Books . I couldn’t read fast enough to keep up with the bi-weekly production of these reviews of books.

I was reading nothing other than reviews of books in the London Review of Books . I had no remaining time to read the books they were reviews of, nor any other book. I no longer took any joy in the London Review of Books; it simply became a task or duty to read each copy before the next was delivered , and I began to skim read and hated myself for skim reading the London Review of Books , because I loved the London Review of Books .

Copies of the London Review of Books in their cellophane wrapping piled up , and I began to be frightened of them, frightened of the reading demands the London Review of Books was placing on me. 

Eventually I had to stop reading the London Review of Books , and the pile of London Review of Books filled a drawer which I kept entirely for the London Review of Books . I terminated my subscription because I could not accept reading the London Review of Books without reading it front to back (excluding classifieds , and incidental advertising etc). I couldn’t touch a copy for years , and refused offers from friends of their (used and filthy) copies of the London Review of Books ; those friends who couldn’t throw away their own copies due to the high status of the London Review of Books , and its high cost.

This year, after having said how I used to love and now hated the London Review of Books and couldn’t handle my subscription to it and would never want another one, my neighbour subscribed me behind my back and for free to the London Review of Books ; a free gift subscription . They were delivered to my home, now sealed in a paper envelope rather than the cellophane ( environmental responsibility ).

I opened the London Review of Books , the first I had opened for ten years , and prepared myself for a front to back read. I liked how folded it was , and how much better it was to read a fresh copy than the used (filthy) copies which had been pushed on me by friends who primarily wanted to indicate to me that they read the London Review of Books by offering their (used and filthy) copies  — thinking that I respected the London Review of Books and its users. 

I began reading and my attention wouldn’t hold. I skipped ahead and read half of one article, a line of another, a title of another. I tried to read the poetry and I still couldn’t understand a single line of it , and had no will to try.

Whereas before I could only think TJClarkPerryAndersonTariqAliNealAscherson thoughts, now I could think of no such London Review of Book thoughts, not even Mar iaWarnerJohnLanchesterJamesButlerAdam Mar sJones thoughts could enter my brain. My brain could take in no London Review of Books information , and could form no London Review of Books thoughts.

All this learning was in two dimensions

I considered what was wrong. Part of it was that every article was written in a this is how things are tone, all so tasteful and knowledgeable and clever. Yes, I knew that I would learn a lot, but it felt like all this learning was in two dimensions. It was a very narrow field. 

I considered: I had read the London Review of Books in order to belong to the LRB club and the knowledge I had wanted to acquire was wholly in order to become a member of this club. And the way the London Review of Books reviewers write — their style — is that of the self-assurance of a certain sort of group of people who are self-assured , or who want to write and be read among — and be among — those who are self-assured.

I reflected that England is one big private members club , and the LRB is just a part of this club (the letters “ LRB ” being a spoken code to enter that club). I discovered that this LRB club wasn’t in Bloomsbury, but in Hampstead , and I discovered that having been invited to play croquet on Hampstead Heath, in the Hampstead Heath Croquet Association, in which the words “elle are bee” occurred frequently.

I don’t want someone writing to me as if I were a member of their club , or want to be a member of their club. Everything in this country is a private members club, in which cordial agreement, shared references , and a shared picture of the world is required. A shared belief in what are the right views about the right subjects is required. These people — you? — know the facts and know how to pronounce the facts in the right way. Each article, each sentence of the LRB asks: are you a member of our club? aren’t you a member of our club? Club members look down from their vast knowledge, supported by the vast institutions of their education and the vast institutions of their working life. LRB is a performance of Englishness, just as much as the Hampstead Croquet Association is — often attracting performances by those most insecure in their Englishness.

I reject this LRB club and I will not become a member of it and nor will I cancel my free subscription to the London Review of Books .

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The film should not have ignored the political and musical context to Bernstein’s life

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The Stratford MSG Sphere would have been a dystopian nightmare

Light pollution is not a fringe issue and we need to reconnect to the night sky

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“Discover Liotard and the Lavergne Family Breakfast” at the National Gallery

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Politicians discuss irrelevances rather than confronting the obvious

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High art or high camp?

Elektra, Royal Opera House

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The future is bright for academic freedom

New threats to speech inquiry could inspire an unlikely consensus around openness

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london review of books harry

Prince Harry is not returning to royal role – what Duke of Sussex has said in new interview

It's been rumoured that the duke could rejoin the royals in place of king charles following his cancer diagnosis.

Prince Harry is not returning to royal role – what Duke of Sussex has said in new interview

It has recently been reported that Prince Harry could take up his royal role once again in order to aid his father, King Charles, following the monarch's cancer diagnosis .

On Friday, The Times reported that the King supported a reconciliation with his son and that there w ere feelings within Clarence House that an "arrangement" that saw the Duke of Sussex return as a working royal "could work" . A royal source told the publication: "On all practical levels it makes perfect sense for the family to come together to support the King while he's sick."

Due to his seniority within the royal family, Harry is a counsellor of state, meaning that the King could delegate royal functions to him through letters patent.

Despite the reports, it's unlikely that Harry would return to the royal fold. The Duke of Sussex stepped back from being a working royal in 2020 when he and wife Meghan Markle left in what was dubbed 'Megxit' at the time.

Britain's Prince Harry stands with his fiancée US actress Meghan Markle as she shows off her engagement ring whilst they pose for a photograph in the Sunken Garden at Kensington Palace in west London on November 27, 2017, following the announcement of their engagement. Britain's Prince Harry will marry his US actress girlfriend Meghan Markle early next year after the couple became engaged earlier this month, Clarence House announced on Monday. (Photo by Daniel LEAL / AFP) (Photo by DANIEL LEAL/AFP via Getty Images)

When the pair stopped being working royals, they stopped representing the royal family on engagements, including military ones. A year later, Buckingham Palace confirmed Harry and Meghan could not "continue with the responsibilities and duties that come with a life of public service", which led to them giving up several military, honorary and charitable appointments.

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Despite the reports, Harry hasn't said he would return and seemed to hint the opposite on Friday. During an interview with Good Morning America , the Duke was asked about processing his father's health while living in California.

Prince Harry steps out of his car in Greenwich

In response, the father-of-two said: "I have my own family as we all do. My family and my life in California is as it is." He then added that whilst he will return to the UK, it will only be briefly. " I have got other trips planned that would take me through the UK or back to the UK, so I will stop in and see my family as much as I can ."

Following the news of the King's cancer diagnosis, Harry returned to the United Kingdom , where he had a 45-minute meeting with his father, who delayed his trip to Sandringham in order to see his son.

Prince Harry looking emotional

Neither Buckingham Palace nor sources from the Sussexes' Archewell organisation would comment on the meeting. However, one well-placed source told HELLO! that despite the brevity of their reunion, the King would have been "enormously touched" and "found time in the middle of a busy, planned day to see Harry as soon as he could".

"The King is not in a position to suddenly throw the diary up in the air and rearrange everything," Robert Hardman, the author of Charles III: New King. New Court. The Inside Story , told HELLO! . "He doesn't want that anyway. He's trying to maintain as normal a schedule as possible. But it's lovely for Harry to have come over."

King Charles at Westminster Abbey

It was previously confirmed that Prince William will take on additional responsibilities amid his father's cancer diagnosis. It's believed that William will take on extra duties relating to Charles' public engagements and not to his constitutional role.

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Prince Harry hints he’s open to family reconciliation after king’s cancer diagnosis

Duke of Sussex, who flew to UK to see his father, says in US interview he was grateful for time with family

Prince Harry has said he was grateful to have been able to fly in from the US to visit his father, and hinted King Charles’s cancer diagnosis could heal the rift within the royal family.

In an interview with a US breakfast TV programme on Friday, the Duke of Sussex said his trip to London to see the king could be a step to reunifying his relatives after years of strained relations.

“I love my family. And the fact that I was able to get on a plane and go and see [my father] and spend any time with him, I’m grateful for that,” he told ABC’s Good Morning America from Whistler, Canada.

The host, Will Reeve, spoke of his own family’s reaction to his father, the late Superman actor Christopher Reeve, being paralysed in 1995. He said: “I’ve also found in my own life that sort of an illness in the family can have a galvanising or a sort of reunifying effect for a family. Is that possible in this case?”

Harry replied: “Absolutely. Yeah, I’m sure. Throughout all these families I see it on a day to day basis, again, the strength of the family unit coming together. I think any illness, any sickness brings families together.”

Prince Harry declined to divulge any information when asked about his outlook on his father’s health, saying: “That stays between me and him.” But he said he would visit him in the future. “I’ve got other trips planned that would take me through the UK or back to the UK, so I’ll stop in and see my family as much as I can,” he said.

Asked about his life in the US, and whether he had contemplated becoming a US citizen, the prince said he had considered it. Harry said: “The American citizenship is a thought that has crossed my mind but certainly not something that’s a high priority for me right now.”

It was Harry’s first interview since the king postponed all public-facing duties because of the diagnosis. He was also expected to discuss his life with the Duchess of Sussex and the Invictus Games during the broadcast.

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Harry, who lives in California with his wife and their two children, Prince Archie and Princess Lilibet, flew to the UK last week to see the king. He made the trip less than 24 hours after the public announcement about his father’s health . Meghan and their children remained in California.

There was no meeting with his brother, the Prince of Wales, after Harry’s 45-minute meeting at Clarence House with their father.

King Charles, 75, is staying at the Sandringham estate in Norfolk while receiving treatment. He has handed over public-facing duties to Prince William , but is continuing with official paperwork.

He was diagnosed with an unspecified cancer after receiving unrelated treatment for an enlarged prostate. Later tests identified a different form of cancer. Officials said the king wanted to share his diagnosis to assist public understanding of the disease.

The royals have been beset by health problems this year, with the Princess of Wales treated in hospital for 13 days after undergoing successful abdominal surgery. She is not expected to return to public duties until after Easter, but the exact time of her return was to be determined by medical advice, Kensington Palace said.

Meghan has joined her husband on the trip to Canada as part of a one-year countdown to the 2025 Invictus Games. The Duke of Sussex earlier tried the skeleton bobsled as he joined competitors training for next year’s event.

Harry’s interview took place after a week of announcements from himself and Meghan, with the duchess signing a deal with Lemonada Media to record new podcast shows. The company will distribute Meghan’s previous Archetypes series about female stereotypes, which ran for just one series before a lucrative deal with Spotify ended in 2023.

The couple also relaunched their Archewell website, the name of their foundation, rebranding it the Office of Prince Harry and Meghan, the Duke and Duchess of Sussex.

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