It was one of the most searing images of the twentieth century: two young boys, two princes, walking behind their mother's coffin as the world watched in sorrow - and horror. As Diana, Princess of Wales, was laid to rest, billions wondered what the princes must be thinking and feeling - and how their lives would play out from that point on.
For Harry, this is that story at last.
Before losing his mother, twelve-year-old Prince Harry was known as the carefree one, the happy-go-lucky Spare to the more serious Heir. Grief changed everything. He struggled at school, struggled with anger, with loneliness - and, because he blamed the press for his mother's death, he struggled to accept life in the spotlight.
At twenty-one, he joined the British Army. The discipline gave him structure, and two combat tours made him a hero at home. But he soon felt more lost than ever, suffering from post-traumatic stress and prone to crippling panic attacks. Above all, he couldn't find true love.
Then he met Meghan. The world was swept away by the couple's cinematic romance and rejoiced in their fairy-tale wedding. But from the beginning, Harry and Meghan were preyed upon by the press, subjected to waves of abuse, racism and lies. Watch-ing his wife suffer, their safety and mental health at risk, Harry saw no other way to prevent the tragedy of history repeating itself but to flee his mother country. Over the centuries, leaving the Royal Family was an act few had dared. The last to try, in fact, had been his mother....
For the first time, Prince Harry tells his own story, chronicling his journey with raw, unflinching honesty. A landmark publication, Spare is full of insight, revelation, self-examination, and hard-won wisdom about the eternal power of love over grief.
Prince Harry, The Duke of Sussex, is a husband, father, humanitarian, military veteran, mental wellness advocate and environmentalist. He resides in Santa Barbara, California, with his family and three dogs.
With its raw, unflinching honesty, Spare is a landmark publication full of insight, revelation, self-examination, and hard-won wisdom about the eternal power of love over grief.
Prince Harry wishes to support British charities with donations from his proceeds from Spare. The Duke of Sussex has donated $1,500,000 to Sentebale, an organisation he founded with Prince Seeiso in their mothers' legacies, which supports vulnerable children and young people in Lesotho and Botswana affected by HIV/AIDS. Prince Harry will also donate to the non-profit organisation WellChild in the amount of £300,000. WellChild, which he has been Royal patron of for fifteen years, makes it possible for children and young people with complex health needs to be cared for at home instead of hospital, wherever possible.
Extract from "Spare" by Prince Harry The Duke of Sussex:
"My Army superiors, like PA, were unconcerned. They didn't care about me playing billiards in the privacy of a hotel room, naked or not. My status remained unchanged, they said. All systems go. My fellow soldiers stood up for me too. Men and women in uniform, all around the world, posed naked, or nearly so, covering their privates with hel-mets, weapons, berets, and posted the photos online, in solidarity with Prince Harry.
As for Cress: After hearing my careful and abashed explanation, she came to the same conclusion. I'd been a dummy, not a debaucher.
I apologized for embarrassing her.
Best of all, none of my bodyguards were dismissed or even disciplined - mainly because I kept it a secret that they'd been with me at the time.
But the British papers, even knowing I was off to war, continued to vent and fume as if I'd committed a capital offence.
It was a good time to leave.
September 2012. The same eternal flight, but this time I wasn't a stowaway. This time there was no hidden alcove, no secret bunkbeds. This time I was allowed to sit with all the other soldiers, to feel part of a team.
As we touched down at Camp Bastion, however, I realized I wasn't quite one of the lads. Some looked nervous, their collars tighter, their Adam's ap-ples larger. I remembered that feeling, but for me this was coming home. After more than four years, and against all odds, I was finally back. As a Cap-tain. (I'd been promoted since my first tour.)
My accommodation this time was better. In fact, compared to my last tour, it was Vegas-esque. Pilots were treated like - the word was unavoidable, every-body used it - royalty. Soft beds, clean rooms. More, the rooms were actual rooms, not trenches or tents. Each even had its own air-con unit.
We were given a week to learn our way around Bastion, and to recover from jet lag. Other Bastionites were helpful, more than happy to show us the ropes.
Captain Wales, this is where the latrines are!
Captain Wales, over here is where you'll find hot pizza!
It felt a bit like a field trip, until, on the eve of my twenty-eighth birthday, I was sitting in my room, organizing my stuff, and sirens started going off. I opened my door, peered out. All down the hall other doors were flying open, other heads popping out.
Now both my bodyguards came running. (Unlike the last tour of duty, I had bodyguards this time, mainly because there was proper accommodation for them, and because they could blend in: I was living with thousands of others.) One said: We're under attack!
We heard explosions in the distance, near the aircraft hangars. I started to run for my Apache but my bodyguards stopped me.
Way too dangerous.
We heard shouting outside. Make ready! MAKE READY!
We all got into body armour and stood in the doorway to await the next instructions. As I double-checked my vest and helmet one bodyguard kept up a constant patter: I knew this was going to happen, I just knew it, I told every-one, but no one would listen. Shut up, they said, but I told them, I told them, Harry's going to get hurt! Fuck off, they said, and now here we are.
He was a Scot, with a thick burr, and often sounded like Sean Connery, which was charming under normal circumstances, but now he just sounded like Sean Connery having a panic attack. I cut off his long story about being an unappreciated Cassandra and told him to put a sock in it.
I felt naked. I had my 9-mm, but my SA8oA was locked up. I had my body-guards, but I needed my Apache. That was the only place I'd feel safe - and useful. I needed to rain fire down on our attackers, whoever they were.
More explosions, louder explosions. The windows flickered. Now we saw flames. American Cobras came thumping overhead and the whole building shuddered. The Cobras fired. The Apaches fired. An awesome roar filled the room. We all felt dread, and adrenaline. But we Apache pilots were especially agitated, itching to get into our cockpits.
Someone reminded me that Bastion was about the size of Reading. How could we ever navigate our way from here to the helicopters without a map, while taking fire?
That was when we heard the all-clear.
The sirens stopped. The thump of rotors faded.
Bastion was secure again. But at a terrible price, we learned.
Two American soldiers were killed. Seventeen British and American soldiers were injured."