They are arguably one of the most recognised couples in the world.
But “few know the true story of Harry and Meghan”, according to publishers of a new biography of the Duke and Duchess of Sussex.
The book, titled Finding Freedom, promises an “up close portrait” of the “confident, influential and forward-thinking” couple – which is likely to be an unwelcome update for Buckingham Palace.
The explosive biography will tell of “the making of the modern Royal Family”. The title has echoes of Nelson Mandela’s autobiography Long Walk To Freedom and may be seen as over-dramatic by some critics.
It is unlikely that many people will put Harry and Meghan’s decision to quit royal duties and pursue a lucrative new life of commercial opportunity in Los Angeles on a par with being a political freedom fighter.
Palace insiders are apparently concerned the tell-all book, written by two journalists favoured by the couple, will be used to settle scores. It is expected to paint a flattering picture of Harry, 35, and Meghan, 38, and go “beyond the headlines” to reveal unknown details of their life together.
Harper Collins, which owns publisher Dey Street Books, has released a brief description of the Sussexes’ collaboration with authors Omid Scobie and Carolyn Durand. It says the biography will dispel “the many rumours and misconceptions that plague the couple on both sides of the pond”.
It adds: “With unique access and written with the participation of those closest to the couple, Finding Freedom is an honest, up-close and disarming portrait of a confident, influential and forward-thinking couple who are unafraid to break with tradition, determined to create a new path away from the spotlight and dedicated to building a humanitarian legacy that will make a profound difference in the world.”
The cover features a beaming Harry and Meghan on their first visit to Sussex in October 2018. It is thought the couple gave the interview to Scobie, royal editor at Harper’s Bazaar, and Durand, royal reporter for Elle magazine, before they moved to Canada and then Los Angeles this year.
The book’s description adds: “When news of the budding romance between a beloved English prince and an American actress broke, it captured the world’s attention and sparked an international media frenzy.”
But while the Duke and Duchess of Sussex have continued to make headlines – from their engagement, wedding, and birth of their son Archie to their unprecedented decision to step back from their royal lives – few know the true story of Harry and Meghan.’
Last month, the couple launched an extraordinary broadside against the British media from their LA home, announcing they would no longer “engage” with certain newspapers, including the Daily Mail, in protest at the way they claim their lives are covered.
They are also currently embroiled in a court battle against the Mail’s sister paper, The Mail on Sunday, regarding the publication of a letter Markle sent her estranged father Thomas. In January the couple’s friend Tom Bradby, presenter of News at Ten on ITV, said the prospect of an on-the-record tell-all interview with the pair would ‘not be pretty’.
It came after he interviewed the Sussexes last year for a documentary in which Harry revealed the extent of the rift with his brother Prince William.
Bradby said: “I have some idea of what might be aired in a full, no-holds barred, sit-down interview and I don’t think it would be pretty.”
Finding Freedom is set to be available online on August 11, with the hard copy on sale from August 20.
By Lizzie Deane and Xantha Leatham