Audiobook: Spare

by Prince Harry, Duke of Sussex
Read by the author
Support your local independent bookstore: buy it there!
Or listen at Libro.fm
Content: There is some swearing, including a few f-bombs, as well as talk of drinking and drug use. It’s in the biography section of the bookstore.

Okay, I recognize that by reading this book I’m caving to peer pressure – everyone is reading this to find out the gossip. But, in my defense: I love celebrity memoirs (especially on audio), and Prince Harry is probably more of a relevant celebrity than, say, Bono. So, it was probably inevitable that I was going to listen to it.

Is this the point where I mention that while I’m not ignorant of the royals, I’m also not a super royal watcher. They’re interesting because, well, they’re the Royal family, but I’m not super invested in what Kate’s wearing right now.

That said, I was floored by the life Prince Harry has led. He had some smart observations on the nature of celebrity, musing at one point that the only thing he ever did to deserve having paparazzi chase him was be born. He’s not talented, he’s not a musician or an actor. Why is he a “celebrity”? Because he was born into this particular family. It’s a smartly written memoir (I’m assuming he had a ghostwriter help him), and he reads it well. And, well, if the purpose of the book was to work through the trauma surrounding his mother’s death and to explain why, ultimately, he and Meghan had to leave the family, then he did his job. It starts with his mom’s death, and moves forward through to the present day, and let’s just say that he has a deep resentment of both the paparazzi (who more than once just made up lies about him, his girlfriends, and now his wife) and the monarchy as an institution. He loves his family, and wishes he didn’t need to fight with them, but the monarchy? It’s not that great. It messes with people’s lives, it’s complicit in the bad press, and it desperately needs to be updated. And maybe Harry’s the person to do it.

It really was an interesting and engaging book, and surprised me with how engrossing it was. I definitly don’t regret reading it at all. And I wish Harry and Meghan all the happiness in the world. They deserve it.

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