The Duke of Sussex has been told to “take a risk” and step into the “real world” to promote his upcoming memoir, titled Spare. Prince Harry’s much-anticipated book will be released worldwide on January 10 next year, its publisher Penguin Random House has revealed.
While sharing details of the memoir, including that it will feature “raw, unflinching honesty”, the publisher did not reveal whether the Duke of Sussex will embark on a promotional tour.
Literary agent Peter Cox of Litopia believes Harry could gain massively by undertaking a book tour which puts him in contact with a different audience and media than the one he is used to.
Discussing the chances of seeing Harry jetting off for a promotional campaign for Spare, he told Express.co.uk: “The publisher will have tried to commit Harry to support the book’s marketing campaign as far as possible. And equally, he may have resisted all or part of their demands – that is part of the contractual negotiation
“What I find fascinating is the possibility of Harry doing a proper book tour, which would mean engaging with critical media – local radio, maybe, or even Joe Rogan!
“If Harry really wants us to see the real person, then he needs to step out from the royal’s tightly-controlled media bubble into the real world. Take a risk!
“It could be brilliant. He could win a ton of new supporters, and sell oodles of books too.
“Or of course, it might be a disaster. I would love to see him rise to that challenge.”
Mr Cox’s remarks came before reports that Harry’s book is unlikely to be pushed by a huge publicity blitz.
But Mr Cox noted Harry and his team will probably have to abide by the decisions made by Penguin Random House when it comes to the promotion of Spare.
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The Daily Telegraph wrote it is thought Harry may travel to the UK in the New Year to take part in some promotional activity where he can explain his “intent” and hopes for the book.
At the same time, the publication claimed aides are aware both the Duke and Duchess of Sussex are still members of the Royal Family despite having relinquished their senior working roles two years ago.
This means Harry’s remaining royal links could bar him from taking part in a vast publicity tour similar to those other celebrities have been on.
In June last year, when Meghan Markle released her first children’s book titled The Bench also published by Penguin Random House, the Duchess only released one interview to promote her debut work.
A promotional book would have been a difficult task for the Duchess at the time, as she had just given birth to her daughter Lilibet “Lili” Diana.
Speaking with NPR, Meghan recalled how the message of her book, which stemmed from a poem she had penned for Prince Harry to mark his first-ever Father’s Day, was universal despite being inspired by the bond between father and son.
A few months later, the Duchess made an appearance on the Brightly Storytime YouTube channel, run by Penguin Random House, to read her book from her California mansion’s garden.
Prince Harry and Meghan’s organisation Archewell announced in July last year the Duke of Sussex was authoring an “intimate” memoir in which he would provide the “definitive account of the experiences, adventures, losses, and life lessons that have helped shape him”.
While the book was expected to be released in late 2022, in time to enjoy the sales of the lucrative US Thanksgiving and Christmas markets, it was announced on Thursday it will instead be published worldwide and in 16 languages early next year.
Penguin Random House focused the marketing of the book on a pivotal moment in royal history and Harry’s personal life – the funeral cortege during which, in September 1997, the Duke and his elder brother Prince William walked behind the coffin of their late mother Princess Diana.
The publisher’s newly-released description of the book read: “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.”