Before Harry's Royal Memoir, Learn Whose Palace Tell-All Spilled the Earl Grey Tea First
Long before Prince Harry announced he would be writing a "wholly truthful memoir," another royal chose to step away from royal life — and then told his story
Edward, Duke of Windsor — who was Queen Elizabeth's uncle and had been coronated King Edward VIII before abdicating the throne in 1936 so he could marry American Wallis Simpson — produced a ghost-written biography titled A King's Story: The Memoirs of the Duke of Windsor in 1951. The memoir recalled his royal upbringing and schooling, leading up to falling in love with the American divorcée and ultimately giving up the position as monarch.
"Given my character, my roving curiosity and independence, my life appeared to form a disconnected pattern — duty without decision, service without responsibility, pomp without power," wrote Harry's great-great-uncle, according to an excerpt on Amazon. "Meanwhile, something had happened that, although I did not realise it at the time, was destined to change the whole course of my life. I met Wallis Warfield Simpson."
Edward and Wallis struggled financially after the abdication, having been cut off from the monarchy and having no source of income. Royalties from Edward's memoir helped fund them as they lived in France.
Wallis published her own memoir, The Heart Has Its Reasons, in 1956.
Penguin Random House announced on Monday that Prince Harry, 36, is writing a memoir that's scheduled to be released in late 2022.
"I'm writing this not as the prince I was born but as the man I have become," said Harry in a statement. "I've worn many hats over the years, both literally and figuratively, and my hope is that in telling my story — the highs and lows, the mistakes, the lessons learned — I can help show that no matter where we come from, we have more in common than we think."
Continued Harry, 36, "I'm deeply grateful for the opportunity to share what I've learned over the course of my life so far and excited for people to read a firsthand account of my life that's accurate and wholly truthful."