Meghan Markle dedicates her new children’s book The Bench to Prince Harry and Archie
Meghan Markle has dedicated her new children’s book to Prince Harry and son Archie, saying they make her heart go ‘pump-pump.’
The touching inscription in the book, reproduced from a hand-written note in the Duchess of Sussex‘s distinctive calligraphy script, reads: ‘For the man and the boy who make my heart go pump-pump.’
The £12.99 book The Bench is published on Tuesday but copies are already on sale.
Meghan, 39, has said the 34-page illustrated story was inspired by a poem she wrote for her husband on Father’s Day the month after Archie was born and features ‘a diverse group of fathers and sons’.
Meghan Markle (right) has dedicated her new children’s book to Prince Harry and their son Archie
There are several drawings of Harry and Archie, along with their two dogs and rescue chickens.
Bestselling Californian artist Christian Robinson, who was brought up by his grandmother in a one-bedroom flat, drew the images which include a red-headed soldier holding his son aloft as a woman watches crying from a window, likely a reference to 36-year-old Prince Harry’s military service.
Underneath it says: ‘And here in the window I’ll have tears of great joy; Looking out at My Love and our beautiful boy.’
Heavily pregnant Meghan, who is due to give birth any day to the couple’s second child, a daughter, will narrate the accompanying audio book.
Reports claim she could have received as much as £500,000 as an advance for the book but stands to earn millions more if, as expected, it becomes a bestseller.
Meghan said: ‘The Bench started as a poem I wrote for my husband on Father’s Day, the month after Archie was born. That poem became this story.
‘Christian layered in beautiful and ethereal watercolour illustrations that capture the warmth, joy, and comfort of the relationship between fathers and sons from all walks of life. ‘This representation was particularly important to me, and Christian and I worked closely to depict this special bond through an inclusive lens.
An illustration from her book which may be a nod to Harry’s days in the Armed Services
‘My hope is that The Bench resonates with every family, no matter the make-up, as much as it does with mine.’
The book’s cover describes the Duchess as ‘wife, mother, feminist and activist,’ adding that through the work of their charity, the Archewell Foundation, ‘she and her husband are committed to activating compassion in communities across the world’.
It concludes: ‘She currently resides in California with her family, two dogs and a growing flock of rescue chickens.’
Photographer Gray Malin, a friend of the Duchess, posted images of the book to his 35,400 Instagram followers on Friday after receiving an advance copy with a hand- written note: ‘From one parent to another – all my love from my family to yours. As ever, Meghan.’
Prince Harry and Meghan Duchess of Sussex, holding their son Archie during a visit to Cape Town
He revealed a previously unseen illustration of Prince Harry and baby Archie walking hand-in-hand together. The Mail on Sunday bought a copy from a bookshop in Los Angeles.
Speculation has been rife on social media that the Duchess may have already given birth to her second child. One fan wrote: ‘With the new book and Father’s Day coming up [June 20], wouldn’t it be neat if she’s already had the baby and is waiting to announce it when the book comes out?’
Oprah who? Joker Edward makes fun of that interview
By Jonathan Bucks
Prince Edward and his wife Sophie have jokingly dismissed the Duke and Duchess of Sussex’s bombshell interview with Oprah Winfrey by asking: ‘Oprah who? What interview?’
But in their first major interview since they married in 1999, the couple insisted that despite recent controversies involving Prince Harry and Meghan, the Windsors remained a family ‘no matter what happens’.
They also reflected on the death of Prince Philip, with Edward describing how coronavirus restrictions had created an ‘extremely odd’ funeral and a poignant moment ‘when everything stopped’.
‘Oprah who?’: The Wessexes joked about Harry and Meghan’s controversial Oprah interview (above)
Sophie told The Daily Telegraph that the family were still reeling from the Duke’s death and the couple’s children, Lady Louise Windsor and James, Viscount Severn, ‘still keep expecting to see Grandpa arrive in his green Land Rover’.
Edward said the Queen had kept busy since Philip’s death, adding: ‘The job is not something you can walk away from, it just carries on relentlessly.’
Asked if they had watched the Oprah Winfrey interview in March, they chuckled, with Sophie jokingly saying: ‘What interview?’ Edward added mischievously: ‘Oprah who?’
Sophie, 56, also revealed that she enjoyed a ‘lengthy chat’ with Harry after Philip’s funeral in April. ‘We are still a family no matter what happens, we always will be,’ she said.
The couple also reflected on their more prominent role within the monarchy, since the Sussexes and Prince Andrew, Duke of York stepped back from royal duties
The couple said they were ‘flattered’ to be given a more prominent role in a slimmed-down monarchy since Harry and Meghan’s move to California.
Recalling the Duke’s funeral, Edward, 57, said: ‘It was extraordinarily odd walking into St George’s Chapel and finding the nave completely empty. It became really poignant to be there because it was suddenly so very intimate.’
Sophie said she had been affected by the image of the Queen grieving in isolation as she sat alone in the chapel due to Covid-19 restrictions.
‘To see Her Majesty on her own… it was very poignant.’