But within months, the Sussexes had left their royal life, leaving loved ones upset and angry, and Harry and William’s long-strained relationship worsened.
A new book on The Firm, written by a very well-connected and experienced biographer who acts as an advisor on Netflix’s The Crown, claims to lift the veil on life behind the palace walls.
The Battle of the Brothers by Robert Lacey is the second huge royal book released this year and offers a rather different story to Omid Scobie and Carolyn Durand’s Finding Freedom, who told Meghan and Harry’s side of the ‘Megxit’ story. .
While Lacey’s book focuses primarily on the Welsh brothers, William and Harry, it shares information about the whole family, including the Queen, Duchess of Cambridge and Meghan Markle.
It gives a new take on the now infamous ‘what Meghan wants, Meghan gets’ the tiara incident and offers Lacey’s take on the main failures of the Royal Family when it comes to hosting the American actress in the fold.
The day the new Bomb Books hit the shelves, we took a look at some of the most explosive claims from its pages.
Queen’s response to Harry ‘What Meghan wants, Meghan gets’ comment
There have been countless accounts of the day Meghan met the Queen to pick out her wedding day tiara, and Lacey offers another take.
Everyone seems to agree that Meghan was not allowed to have her first choice of sparkly headgear, and Battle of Brothers explains why.
Harry was far from impressed and reportedly said ‘what Meghan wants, Meghan gets’ – but his grandmother was not impressed.
Lacey claims the Queen replied, “Meghan can’t have what she wants. She gets the tiara she gave me. “
Harry and William’s ‘showdown’ against Meghan Markle’s edition of Vogue Forces of Change
When Meghan was asked to appear on the cover of Vogue magazine, just as the Duchess of Cambridge and Princess Diana did, she was touched by the offer but had another idea.
Rather than just agreeing to a photoshoot, she asked if she could edit as a guest – and spent months working with the team to create her Forces of Change edition.
But Lacey claims the royals were no more pleased with the content, much of it far from unbiased, and William and Harry had a “showdown” when they tried to discuss it.
He claims that no one knows exactly what happened, but he’s described as “another classic Harry explosion, followed by another even deeper breakup.”
He also suggests that after their firm words, Harry and Meghan have decided not to join the Cambridges and the rest of the Royal Family on their annual summer vacation at Balmoral.
Prince Charles reassured Harry that he was his father, not James Hewitt
For much of Harry’s life there have been cruel and false stories that Diana’s friend, James Hewitt, is in fact her “real” father.
According to Lacey, Charles sat down with his youngest son to bring up the subject and to make sure he knew it was a lie.
“Charles’s concern was to reassure his son” that no doubt he and not Hewitt was his father “- and probably Charles pointed out how the timing made the rumor quite impossible since Hewitt had only met Diana two years later. the birth of Harry. “
According to the book, Harry “listened intently” but “didn’t see a word while his father was speaking, or when he was done.”
William refused to have lunch with Harry before the Sandringham summit
After Meghan and Harry dropped their life-changing resignation statement on social media, they had to work out the logistics.
The Queen summoned her grandson, along with Charles and William, to Sandringham to sit down and talk about everything.
However, Lacey claims William was still furious at his brother’s actions and turned down an invitation to have a family lunch before he started talking about business.
He writes: “The Queen had suggested that the family meet for lunch before their big powwow in the library this afternoon, but he turned down his grandmother’s invitation.
“Obviously he would show up at 2pm for the meeting,” he said, “but he just wanted to talk business.
“The prince himself has not confirmed his friends’ speculation that he was so furious with his younger brother that he couldn’t stand the hypocrisy of smiling at him during lunch. “
William did not approve of decision to keep details of Archie’s birth secret
Meghan and Harry have broken with royal tradition and have kept details of their son Archie’s birth secret.
This included where he was born and who they chose to be his godparents.
Lacey writes: “William didn’t appreciate Harry and Meghan’s ‘prima donna’ maneuvers to cover up the birth of their son. He and Kate did not visit the newcomer for eight days. ”
But according to Lacey, it was Meghan and Harry’s decision not to reveal Archie’s godparents that really moved.
All members of the royal family have godparents, as is traditional in the Christian religion, and they are called “sponsors”.
Lacey writes, “The ‘Secret Sponsor’ sounds questionable. And it is an ingredient of the representative monarchy of Britain that the people should have a right to know who is giving moral advice to their possible future King or Queen. ”
He continues: “William’s ‘friends’ suggested that the future king, only five places Archie in the line of succession, could not understand how such a fundamental question of constitutional principle had been misunderstood.
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“How could a new royal from Windsor be baptized in any meaningful sense without the newcomer’s sponsors being known, if not present?”
“What does such bizarre and paranoid behavior say about the parents involved? One thing we can conclude is that Harry and Meghan had developed an exaggerated idea of their own importance. “
Meghan and Harry ‘share a common flaw’
Lacey is critical of many of Meghan and Harry’s decisions over the past two years.
He also accuses them of being “victims who feel sorry for themselves”.
He writes: “The months that have passed since their marriage have shown that the couple share a common character flaw – they both tend to descend from their generous peaks of self-confidence to miserable moments of pitiful victimization. “
Chelsy Davy and Cressida Bonas dumped Harry after being scared of royal life
Before marrying Meghan, Harry saw two of his serious relationships fail because the women he loved didn’t want to take on the life of a princess.
Chelsy Davy and Cressida Bonas have decided the royal spotlight is not for them after watching the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge’s relationship develop.
Lacey claims it was Kate and William’s wedding that was the last straw for Chelsey, telling a friend she could never make Kate’s sacrifices.
And it was the Cambridge family’s tour of Australia that gave Cressida a glimpse of her future potential.
Watching Kate and Prince George get off the plane and confront the media around the world would have left the actress “completely scared” and she told Harry she didn’t want to have this life with her children.
The Queen’s secret plan for Meghan and Harry
Lacey claims Her Majesty suggested the Sussexes spend a year or two in Johannesburg in 2019.
The monarch knew how desperate the couple were for an “ordinary” existence and felt that something similar to the years she had spent in Malta in her youth could do them some good.
She had tasted “normal” life during her “Malta Moments” between 1949 and 1951, alongside Prince Philip, who served as a naval officer on the Mediterranean island.
The future queen would often fly to stay with the Duke of Edinburgh, preparing her well to return home for her duty, Mr Lacey explained.
Harry and Meghan were reportedly interested in moving to Africa, where their relationship had already blossomed, or elsewhere in the Commonwealth.
However, it wasn’t meant to be and Meghan and Harry quit before the plan came true.
- The Battle of Robert Lacey’s Brothers: William, Harry and the Inside Story of a Family in Tumult is now available.