Publishers claim 'Spare' is 'fastest-selling non-fiction book ever'

Publishers claim Prince Harry’s memoir ‘Spare’ is the ‘fastest-selling non-fiction book ever with 400,000 sales on release… beaten only by Harry Potter titles on their first day’

  • Prince Harry’s Spare is claimed to be ‘fastest-selling non-fiction book ever
  • The autobiography was released today and its publisher boats 400,000 sales
  • Penguin Random House claims only Harry Potter ‘sold more in their first day’

The Duke of Sussex’s controversial and revealing memoir has become the fastest selling non-fiction book ever, according to its publisher.

Prince Harry’s tell-all autobiography Spare was finally released at midnight, with a record 400,000 hardback, e-book and audio format copies reportedly being sold.

The book includes claims that the Prince of Wales physically attacked him and teased him about his panic attacks, and that the King put his own interests above Harry’s and was jealous of the Duchess of Sussex and the Princess of Wales.

Larry Finlay, managing director of Transworld Penguin Random House, said: ‘We always knew this book would fly but it is exceeding even our most bullish expectations.

‘As far as we know, the only books to have sold more in their first day are those starring the other Harry (Potter).’

Prince Harry’s Spare has become ‘the fastest selling non-fiction book ever’ according to publisher Transworld Penguin Random House

A record 400,000 hardback, e-book and audio format copies have reportedly been sold within its first day

As the duke continued a run of high profile promotional interviews, he said he ‘would like nothing more’ than for his children to have relationships with the royal family.

His remarks about his son and daughter came despite the criticism he has levelled at his brother William, father Charles and stepmother Camilla.

In his first print interview about his autobiography, he told US magazine People that Archie, three, and 19-month-old Lili did have a connection with some of the Windsors, whom he did not name, saying this brought him ‘great joy’.

He also described his late mother, Diana, Princess of Wales, as his ‘guardian angel’ and said she is with him ‘all the time’.

Bookshops in the UK opened early on Tuesday to offer Harry’s book – but queues were sparse after leaks ahead of the publication, with industry experts predicting Spare would be one of the best-selling pre-order titles of the past decade.

It is being sold for £14, not the recommended retail price of £28, in places such as Waterstones and WH Smith as well as online at Amazon.

Caroline Lennon, the first customer to purchase a copy of Spare, poses for photographers with her copy of the book as she leaves Waterstones Piccadilly

Just one person was waiting outside Waterstones’ flagship branch in Piccadilly, central London, when it opened at 8am.

Caroline Lennon, 59, who had walked two miles from Bethnal Green in the East End to arrive at 6am, said: ‘People will criticise me and say, “What an idiot for liking Harry. What an idiot for queuing up”, but I don’t care what anyone says.’

Other royal fans had queued for midnight store openings, with a handful waiting outside WH Smith in London’s Victoria station to be among the first to buy a copy.

In his interview with People magazine, which featured a flattering photoshoot, Harry said of his book, which was ghost written by JR Moehringer: ‘I don’t want to tell anyone what to think of it, and that includes my family. This book and its truths are in many ways a continuation of my own mental health journey.

‘It’s a raw account of my life — the good, the bad and everything in between.’

Prince Harry does Tequila shots with TV host Stephen Colbert whilst speaking about his book ‘Spare’ in New York City

Harry is also guesting on The Late Show With Stephen Colbert in the US on Tuesday evening.

Images of the more light-hearted interview appeared to show Harry being presented with shots of tequila, and, while trailing the programme, Colbert made jokes about Harry and William’s sibling rivalry, comparing his life to Harry Potter.

‘That’s heart-breaking. To be rejected by his older brother at school even though that magic hat sorted them into the same house. What do you think? Hufflepuff? Gryffindor?’ Colbert said.

‘Stock up on corgis and steal a priceless cultural treasure from one of your colonies, because The Late Show is going imperial.’

Harry has faced criticism for his revelation in Spare that he killed 25 Taliban members during the Afghanistan war.

He has also shared frank admissions of drug-taking throughout his life, of losing his virginity to an older woman in a field as a teenager, and getting frostbite on his penis.

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