“The look on Meg’s face — this was pure grief. Tormenting Meghan has become a national sport that shames us, said a headline in The Guardian. So true. But no one was shamed, that was the problem. No feeling the slightest pang of conscience. Would they finally feel some if they caused a divorce? Or would it take another death?”
Now that I’m finished reading Spare, a memoir by Prince Harry, I have to admit that the book was phenomenal; however, there is a small regret. Upon reflection, making this into three parts may have been too much though it did sound like a good idea at the time! Hopefully, not everyone is downright tired of it by now! Going forward, reviews will just be kept to one part. If readers are not already sick of hearing about Spare by this point, then bless you! Also, don’t worry. This is the last one before returning to our regularly scheduled history articles, news, writing, and book reviews starting Monday!
Before I dive right into this last section of Prince Harry’s book, I wanted to make a quick update because it was mentioned that a new Lewis & Clark series I am working on would be posted which had been planned for today and tomorrow as articles for over the weekend in a two-part mini-series, unfortunately, that will be postponed until Thursday and Friday of this week instead. This review of Spare has been a longer project than intended.
PART ONE: Out Of The Night That Covers
PART TWO: Bloody, but Unbowed
Captain of My Soul is the third section of Spare and focuses on Harry’s love for his wife Meghan, their wedding, and their leaving Britain after relentless media attacks on their marriage just wouldn’t cease. Meghan right from the onslaught faced such fierce harassment from the media. These attacks began the very moment it was announced that she was dating Prince Harry.
That is the true tragedy. Reading of their experiences really hit home for me how much this couple and especially the Duchess was cast as the villain for no apparent reason. It didn’t matter a single ounce what Meghan did. The main takeaway I’ve gotten from the book is how there was never any winning. The press would find a way to say she had done something offensive and wrong. Harry felt really helpless in getting the press to stop.
All avenues were attempted. Harry begged for help from his family, the communication teams, and the top advisers to do something about the press intrusion. The escalation was quite horrific. They zeroed in on his wife and made Meghan the target of such gruesome racism. Everyone saw it. When Harry and Meghan’s eldest child Archie was born. The media printed images of the couple photoshopped walking a monkey home.
“It was already happening in slow motion. Death threats. Her workplace on lockdown because someone, reacting to what they’d read, had made a credible threat. She’s isolated, I said, and afraid, she hasn’t raised the blinds in her house for months—and you’re telling me not to read it? He said I was overreacting. This is sadly just the way it is. I appealed to his self-interest. Doing nothing was a terrible look for the monarchy. People out there have strong feelings about what’s happening to her, Pa. They take it personally, you need to understand that. He was unmoved.”
The most disheartening thing about Harry and Meghan’s relationship is how lovely it began. Harry describes it as literally love at first sight. So it is quite sad to see how much their relationship has been picked apart and how blackened the media has made it. As if it were anyone’s business. The weeks before the press caught on to them are quite beautiful. The first days of love are always special. Harry details how enamored they were and determined to make it all work despite the long distance aspect hovering between them.
“We talked about Meg’s work. We talked about mine. Mostly we talked about this relationship, a subject so immense it seemed inexhaustible. We continued the talk as we got back into the car and drove to the airport, and kept talking in the park, where I dropped her on the sly. We agreed that if we were serious about giving ourselves a chance, a real chance, we’d need a serious plan. Which meant, among other things, making a vow never to let more than two weeks pass without seeing each other.”
Press coverage wasn’t easily escaped. Harry wanted to sue and have the royal family lawyers put a stop to all the hogwash. Their goal was to make a happy life at Frogmore and work in service to the crown. Find their path within the working royals but the press was too much. Printed lies after lies. Meghan was constantly being dragged and nobody was listening. Safety was a real concern. Things became impossible and the two were very unhappy.
“We already knew for a fact that the papers put private investigators onto Meg, and onto everyone in her circle, those in her life, even many not in her life, so we knew that they were experts on her background and boyfriends. They were Meg-ologists; they knew more about Meg than anyone in the world apart from Meg, and thus they knew that every word they’d written about her and the hockey player was garbage. But they continued to answer the Palace lawyer’s repeated warnings with the same non-answers, which amounted to a mocking taunt: We. Don’t. Care”
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I agree with your review. It is a powerful and moving account of the couple’s experiences with the media, and it is heartbreaking to see how they were treated. The way Meghan was portrayed as the villain by the press is unacceptable, and it is clear that Harry felt helpless in trying to stop the constant harassment they faced. The fact that their relationship began so beautifully and was then picked apart by the media is truly disheartening.
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I am glad you’ve enjoyed my review and yes I agree, I feel so bad for them and what they have gone through. Hope after this they find some peace.
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Well, you’ve convinced me. Adding this to my to- read list 🙂