Prince Harry's Spare: What we know is revealed in new book

Duke of Sussex’s tell-all book about life in UK royal family is out next week

Prince Harry's autobiography: What to expect

Prince Harry's autobiography: What to expect
Powered by automated translation

Latest: 27 new claims in Prince Harry's book, Spare

Excerpts from Prince Harry’s tell-all book Spare have been leaked in the run-up to its publication on January 10, with previews of his TV interviews also hinting at what will be revealed.

Some copies have also gone on sale in Spain, apparently accidentally, despite publisher Penguin Random House planning a secretive release, with booksellers only given copies at the 11th hour and no preview copies available.

But The Guardian obtained a copy in the US and released an avalanche of stories about what the prince reveals, starting with his claims that he was physically attacked by his brother, Prince William.

Here are the claims and revelations so far:

Prince Harry took cocaine

Sky News obtained a copy of the book and highlighted the prince's revelation that he took cocaine as a teenager.

It says he writes: “Of course, I had been taking cocaine at that time. At someone's house, during a hunting weekend, I was offered a line, and since then, I had consumed some more.

“It wasn't very fun, and it didn't make me feel especially happy as seemed to happen to others, but it did make me feel different, and that was my main objective. To feel. To be different.

“I was a 17-year-old willing to try almost anything that would alter the pre-established order. At least, that's what I was trying to convince myself of.

“At that time, I was as capable of lying to myself as I had lied to that staff member.”

Prince Harry killed 25 people in Afghanistan

Prince Harry reveals that he killed 25 people while serving in Afghanistan, a number he calculates based on footage he watched back at base.

He says he considered taking a life to be part of the job of being a soldier.

During his decade in the army, Prince Harry served as an Apache helicopter pilot and was twice posted to Afghanistan.

“Most soldiers don't know exactly how many kills they have to their credit," he writes, according to Sky News.

“Under battle conditions, you often fire indiscriminately.

“However, in the age of Apaches and laptops, everything I did in the course of two tours of duty was recorded and time-stamped.

“I could always tell exactly how many enemy combatants I had killed. And it seemed essential for me not to be afraid of that figure.

"Among the many things I learnt in the armed forces, one of the most important was to be accountable for my own actions.”

“So my number: 25. It was not something that filled me with satisfaction, but I was not ashamed either.

“Naturally, I would have preferred not to have that figure on my military resume, or in my head, but I would also have preferred to live in a world without the Taliban, a world without war.

“However, even for a casual practitioner of wishful thinking like myself, there are realities that cannot be changed.”

Prince Harry believes his brother is his 'arch nemesis'

In a clip aired on US TV show Good Morning America, host Michael Strahan is seen interviewing Prince Harry about the book.

He asks him to explain the rift between the brothers, pointing out that Prince Harry describes his brother as “beloved” but also “his arch nemesis”.

The prince replied: “There’s always been this competition between us. It really plays into the ‘heir-spare’.”

Heir and a spare

Prince Harry’s position within the royal family, and how he was treated because of it, appears to lie at the heart of much of the grievances he airs in the book.

Building up to his altercation with his brother, Prince Harry writes that he accused him of acting like an heir, unable to understand why his younger brother was not content to be a spare, The Guardian said.

Insults were exchanged, with Prince William saying he was trying to help and Prince Harry replying: “Are you serious? Help me? Sorry — is that what you call this? Helping me?”

Prince Harry was injured when Prince William physically attacked him

Prince Harry writes: “[William] called me another name, then came at me. It all happened so fast. So very fast. He grabbed me by the collar, ripping my necklace, and he knocked me to the floor.

“I landed on the dog’s bowl, which cracked under my back, the pieces cutting into me. I lay there for a moment, dazed, then got to my feet and told him to get out.”

Prince William called Meghan 'rude'

The Guardian revealed the alleged incident took place at Prince Harry’s former home in Nottingham Cottage and that Prince William had called the Duke of Sussex's wife, Meghan, “difficult”, “rude” and “abrasive”.

Prince Harry told him he was parroting the press narrative about his wife.

Prince Harry was 'probably bigoted' before his relationship with Meghan

Prince Harry has said he was “probably bigoted” before his relationship with Meghan Markle.

In a new teaser for an interview with CBS News in the US, which is due to air on Sunday, the Duke of Sussex speaks about how he “didn't see what I now see”.

He says “the race element” to the couple's relationship had been “jumped on straight away” by the British press, adding he had no idea how “bigoted” UK media was until his wife and their relationship were thrust into the spotlight.

The princes had physical fights when younger

Prince Harry writes that after his brother pushed him to the floor during their 2019 altercation, Prince William urged him to hit back, citing fights they had as children.

However, he refused and Prince William left before returning, looking regretful and apologising.

The brothers call each other 'Willy' and 'Harold'

Prince Harry writes that he gave his brother a glass of water and said: “Willy, I can’t speak to you when you’re like this”, while Prince William told him: “I didn’t attack you, Harold.”

Prince Harry told his therapist about the fight before he told Meghan

The Duke of Sussex said Prince William had told him he did not need to tell “Meg” about the confrontation, but Prince Harry writes that he told his therapist first and Meghan later noticed the scrapes and bruises on his back.

“She was terribly sad,” he said of his wife’s reaction.

Pleas for a truce

The boys’ father, then Prince Charles, asked them to stop fighting at Windsor after the Duke of Edinburgh’s funeral.

In a tense meeting after Prince Philip’s funeral, the grieving father told his sons: “Please, boys. Don’t make my final years a misery.”

Prince Harry’s anger at Camilla

The Sun got hold of a Spanish copy of the book and focused on Prince Harry’s feelings for his stepmother, who became Queen Consort Camilla when her husband King Charles III ascended to the throne.

It says Prince Harry writes that he and his brother begged their father not to marry Camilla as she would be a “wicked stepmother”.

He details their first meeting and compares it to getting an injection.

He writes: “This is nothing. Close your eyes and you won't even feel it.” He said Camilla appeared “bored” at the meeting and briefly chatted about horses.

The Sun says, however, that Prince Harry claims the siblings were willing to overcome their feelings if it would make their father happy, but still did not want him to remarry, writing: “We could recognise the absent glances, the empty sighs, the frustration always visible on his face.”

He said the brothers promised their father they would welcome Camilla into the family, but: “The only thing we asked for in return was that he didn't marry her.”

He goes on to accuse Camilla of being behind leaks to the press.

Prince William suspected his father’s affair with Camilla

The Sun says Prince Harry addresses Princess Diana’s Panorama interview in which she said there were “three people in this marriage”, pointing out “the lack of stability, absence of love and affection in our home”.

He says that although he was too young to suspect an affair between his father and Camilla, his elder brother had “harboured suspicions.

He writes: “It would confuse him and torment him.

“When they were confirmed, he felt awful remorse for not having said or done anything sooner.”

Meghan and Kate’s feud

According to The Sun, as Prince Harry’s wedding to Meghan approached, she said to her future sister-in-law Kate, the Duchess of Cambridge, that she must have “baby brain” after giving birth to her third child Louis a month earlier.

Prince Harry and Meghan Duchess of Sussex through the years — in pictures

The duchess became upset at the comment, and Meghan apologised, saying it’s how she speaks to her friends. Prince Harry writes that his brother “pointed a finger at Meg”, then said: “Well, it's rude, Meghan. These things are not done here.”

He says Meghan responded: “If you don't mind, keep your finger out of my face.”

Prince William and Kate encouraged him to wear the Nazi uniform

Prince Harry sparked outrage in 2005 when he wore the Nazi uniform complete with swastika armband to a fancy dress party.

But according to US website Page Six, he claims he phoned the couple to ask them whether he should chose a pilot’s uniform or a Nazi one for the fancy dress party and Prince William and Kate said the latter, both howling with laughter when he tried it on for them.

Father’s delight at Diana giving birth to a 'spare'

Prince Harry tells how, after he was born, his father supposedly told the Princess of Wales that his son’s arrival was wonderful and that now she had given him an heir and a spare, his work was done.

Both Kensington Palace and Buckingham Palace have declined to comment.

A message from Diana

The Guardian followed up its early story with details of how Prince Harry’s sadness over the death of his mother led him to seek help from a woman who “claimed to have ‘powers’” to relay a message.

“You’re living the life she couldn’t,” the paper says the woman told him. “You’re living the life she wanted for you.”

The moment he learnt of Diana’s death

In the book, Prince Harry writes that his father sat on the end of his bed at Balmoral Castle and told him: “My dear son, mum has had a car accident.”

According to The Sun, the prince claims his father did not hug him and that he later “felt like a politician” as he greeted members of the public in the wake of her death.

Repeating Diana's last journey

He said that in 2007 he asked a driver to replicate the journey his mother Diana, Princess of Wales took in the lead-up to her death.

According to People magazine, he wrote: "Off we went, weaving through traffic, cruising past the Ritz, where Mummy had her last meal, with her boyfriend, that August night.

"Then we came to the mouth of the tunnel. We zipped ahead, went over the lip at the tunnel's entrance, the bump that supposedly sent Mummy's Mercedes veering off course.

"I'd always imagined the tunnel as some treacherous passageway, inherently dangerous, but it was just a short, simple, no-frills tunnel. No reason anyone should ever die inside it."

Royal family briefings

Amid the leaks, ITV released a new trailer for Tom Bradby’s interview with Prince Harry.

Bradby challenges him on “invading the privacy of your most nearest and dearest without permission”.

Prince Harry replies: “That would be the accusation from people that don’t understand or don’t want to believe that my family have been briefing the press.”

ITV News at Ten presenter Bradby — a friend of Harry’s — says: “Wouldn’t your brother say to you, ‘Harry, how could you do this to me after everything? After everything we went through?’ Wouldn’t that be what he would say?”

Prince Harry replies: “He would probably say all sorts of different things.”

Will Prince Harry attend King Charles’s coronation?

Asked if he would attend his father’s coronation later this year, he said: “There’s a lot that can happen between now and then but the door is always open, the ball is in their court.”

Prince Harry still wants reconciliation

In an earlier trailer for the interview, Prince Harry said he wanted his father and brother back.

On sale early

The Spanish version En La Sombra, which translates to “In the Shade”, briefly appeared for sale in some shops. It shows that Prince Harry has dedicated his memoir “Para Meg, Archie y Lili … y, por supuesto, mi madre” — “For Meg, Archie and Lili … and, of course, my mother”.

Prince William and Prince Harry through the years — in pictures

Updated: January 10, 2023, 4:34 PM