Meghan Markle Celebrates Children's Book's Success by Reflecting on How It Shows 'Another Side of Masculinity'

The Bench reached No. 1 on The New York Times Bestseller list for children's picture books

Meghan Markle is now a best-selling children's author!

The Duchess of Sussex's illustrated book The Bench has officially reached No. 1 on The New York Times Bestseller list for children's picture books since its release last week. Meghan, 39, thanked fans for "supporting me in this special project" in a new post on her and Prince Harry's Archewell Foundation website on Wednesday.

"While this poem began as a love letter to my husband and son, I'm encouraged to see that its universal themes of love, representation and inclusivity are resonating with communities everywhere," she said. "In many ways, pursuing a more compassionate and equitable world begins with these core values."

Meghan continued, "Equally, to depict another side of masculinity — one grounded in connection, emotion, and softness — is to model a world that so many would like to see for their sons and daughters alike."

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Meghan Markle. Max Mumby/Indigo/Getty
Meghan, The Duchess of Sussex, has authored and will publish on June 8, 2021, her first children’s book, THE BENCH
Meghan Markle's new children's book, The Bench. Random House Books for Young Readers

This isn't the first book project that Meghan has been involved in to become a best seller. Together: Our Community Cookbook, which Meghan wrote the forward to in 2018, also reached the top of the nonfiction charts on Amazon and The Bookseller.

Meghan previously explained that the book was inspired by a Father's Day poem she wrote for her husband in 2019, just a few weeks after their son Archie Harrison was born. The parents welcomed a daughter, named Lilibet Diana in tribute to Queen Elizabeth and Princess Diana, on June 4.

While Prince Harry and Archie are depicted several times in the book, Meghan even included their baby girl. The book's final illustration appears to be inspired by the Duke and Duchess of Sussex's lives in California, with Harry sitting on the bench feeding chickens with Archie. A woman wearing a sun hat, representing Meghan, stands in a garden with baby Lili in a sling!

The Bench
The Bench by Meghan Markle. Stephanie Petit

The book is illustrated by Caldecott-winning artist Christian Robinson. The book jacket features an image of a bench beneath a tree with chickens nearby. In the press release, Meghan is described as "a mother, wife, feminist, and activist" who "currently resides in her home state of California with her family, two dogs, and a growing flock of rescue chickens." In Meghan and Harry's interview in March with Oprah Winfrey, they revealed that they have a chicken coop called the "Chick Inn," a favorite hangout for Archie.

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Meghan isn't the first royal to debut a children's book. In 1980, Prince Charles published The Old Man of Lochnagar, which tells the story of an old man who lives in a cave in the cliffs surrounding the royal estate at Balmoral in Scotland, where the Queen spends her summer vacation. Sales from the book went to the royal's charity, The Prince's Trust.

Sarah Ferguson also penned a popular children's series about Budgie the Little Helicopter. It was later turned into an animated TV show.

Meghan is a longtime book lover and even talked about the sweet tradition of passing the love of reading onto your children.

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