Wow. Wow is my first reaction after finishing Spare by Prince Harry.
I’ve never followed the Royal Family very close. I knew Prince Harry and Prince William were in my age group so I was aware of them growing up. Aware of the tragedy they had gone through losing their mother. But at the same time, I was not aware of how things were for them solely because they were born into the Royal Family.
To say the British press is horrible is putting it lightly. The British press is toxic, vicious, and corrupt. It’s all about the page clicks and generating ad revenue no matter what the cost. Does it matter if the stories are true or accurate? Nope, it just matters that people click the link and open the page, then the ad revenue starts to flow.
It’s heartbreaking to see how the Royal Family treats one another. Another toxic relationship is brought to light in the book. I thought there was a typical sibling rivalry between Prince Harry and Prince William as there is in every sibling relationship. But that’s not the case. After reading Spare, I was shocked to find out that Prince William was called the heir and Prince Harry the spare. That they were both keenly aware of their place in the family from birth and everyone reiterated that Prince Harry was the spare. As a mother, that would have infuriated me. No child is more important than the other. No child should be made to feel like they are literally a bag of spare parts for their older sibling, that their life is not theirs but that they are there to sacrifice their life if it means their older sibling would live. I could not wrap my head around this. As a parent, how do you treat this like casual conversation and then make sure that it is reiterated over and over throughout your young child’s life?
Before reading Spare, I thought Harry had had a fairly charmed life. That there were stable family relationships. I remember watching Prince Harry and Megan marry while getting ready for my daughter’s birthday party and thinking, wow, they look stunning. I was so happy that Megan had found her prince and that Harry had found his other half. It appeared like a fairytale playing out on American television. While, in the background and across the pond, the British press had been tearing them apart for months and weeks, destroying Megan’s family and relationships with those around her. But on American television, you would never have known the heartache and pain Megan was going through. She smiled, waved, and glowed as she headed to the altar to marry the love of her life.
Spare is an enlightening book. Prince Harry did a wonderful job telling his story. He shares what it was like growing up in the Royal Family, finding his way through the military, fighting for his place in the family, and more. You follow Prince Harry as he grows up and learns to stand on his own, realizing that nothing is going to change unless he makes the change and finds the strength to break away.
Prince Harry ends Spare with sadness yet hopeful. It’s clear he wants his family, his whole family, but things have to change.
Spare by Prince Harry is available at your local retailer or online. It’s also available as an audiobook.