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  #2181  
Old 08-25-2020, 02:14 PM
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Originally Posted by SLV View Post
I enjoyed reading the bookreview. Only thing I don't really agree with is the claim that Meghan had to reach out to Catherine and that Catherine didn't have to do so at all. Why, what's wrong with both reaching out to each other? I would reach out to my new sister-in-law if I had more years of experience living in the RF and she just entered.
Why do you feel that Catherine should have reached out with unsolicited advice?
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  #2182  
Old 08-25-2020, 02:15 PM
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I would too but in fairness to Catherine, Harry had already gone up the wall when William tried to give him some well-meaning advice so I wouldn't blame her if she thought it was best to wait until she was asked. Also, Meghan (from what I've seen of her in public) presents as a supremely confident person who has a clear agenda that she's working on. Confident, busy people don't always give off signals that they're open to advice from others so Catherine might well have thought that Meghan wouldn't welcome her input.
Or Catherine might have shared some thoughts and ideas with Meghan and noticed that any input she gave fell on deaf ears, so she stopped trying after a while? Indeed thinking that it was better to wait for Meghan asking for advice before offering it.
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  #2183  
Old 08-25-2020, 02:38 PM
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Or Catherine might have shared some thoughts and ideas with Meghan and noticed that any input she gave fell on deaf ears, so she stopped trying after a while? Indeed thinking that it was better to wait for Meghan asking for advice before offering it.
I think that's also a possible reason why she didn't "reach out" as much as Meghan (in hindsight) says she would have welcomed. Catherine's strategy was to take a very small role initially, gradually building up her own profile over time, which wouldn't have appealed to Meghan, who had already decided to "hit the ground running".
  #2184  
Old 08-25-2020, 04:02 PM
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Given that the shopping trip "snub" got leaked, I suspect that there were trust issues.
  #2185  
Old 08-26-2020, 07:35 AM
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Originally Posted by Moonmaiden23 View Post

ETA: Did Lady Colin Campbell really write the LIE that Meghan did not curtsey to HMQ at her wedding when this was so quickly verified as untrue??
Yup. It's on the very first page!
  #2186  
Old 08-26-2020, 08:02 AM
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Given that the shopping trip "snub" got leaked, I suspect that there were trust issues.
I think that Catherine didn't take to Meghan and probably vice versa. In spite of Harry's eagerly saying that she had met W and Cat and they all loved her... I think she was just wary of Meg and didn't find her congenial.. and didn't want to go shoppign with her.. Problaby felt too that M seemed super confident so she didn't need/want any advice on how to be a royal....
  #2187  
Old 08-30-2020, 08:40 AM
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Does anyone know, have Harry and/or Meghan been interviewed or even asked for comment about this book? I haven't followed this thread consistently so I apologize if this has already been covered here.

It would be interesting to know if either one of them have actually read this book.
  #2188  
Old 08-30-2020, 09:20 AM
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Originally Posted by Lady Daly View Post
Does anyone know, have Harry and/or Meghan been interviewed or even asked for comment about this book? I haven't followed this thread consistently so I apologize if this has already been covered here.

It would be interesting to know if either one of them have actually read this book.
I doubt if tehy will talk about it. Officially they have not had anything to do with it.
  #2189  
Old 08-30-2020, 10:06 AM
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Originally Posted by Denville View Post
I doubt if tehy will talk about it. Officially they have not had anything to do with it.
Thank you Denville. I know very little about the book other than what is being reported here on TRF.
  #2190  
Old 08-30-2020, 11:22 AM
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Originally Posted by Lady Daly View Post
Thank you Denville. I know very little about the book other than what is being reported here on TRF.
Nor do I.. except that Omid was very cagy about where he got his info and it seems like he was making it clear that he did not talk to them and they are not going to say they had anything to do with the boollk
  #2191  
Old 08-30-2020, 12:06 PM
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For me, the book is rather poorly written, especially the first two chapters. It's as if they didn't have an editor. I'm happy for Omid Scobie that the book is a best seller, but it is selling purely because of the worldwide interest in the Sussexes and in the ongoing British royal family dramas. Omid is a decent writer, so maybe some of the chapters which read better had more input from him. It's hard to tell.

Probably, once the Sussexes stepped away from royal duties, the publishers got nervous about the authors taking their time writing the book. I heard that Carolyn Durand had approached Omid in 2018 sometime after the royal wedding. She knew that Omid has insider Sussex sources, while she has some insider palace sources and she's a bit more conservative. So together, they made a good combination to write a book about the newly minted Sussexes. Initially, it was expected to be a general biography documenting the Sussexes' love story and their life together as senior royals. Clearly, the focus changed as unexpected developments began to occur.

In the beginning, the authors apparently weren't trying to rush things since they'd been doing research and working on the book for nearly two years. That obviously all changed after the Sussexit departure from the royal firm in January. Most likely, the publishers put pressure on Durand and Omid to simply give them what they had. Seemingly the publishers were worried about marketing the book long term amidst the uncertainties of the Sussexes' situation, especially when the pandemic also hit. As a result, in my view, the opening chapters seem thrown together with no narrative through line. Passages begin with one thought and then go off on tangents with run-on sentences. I seriously was getting whiplash trying read those first chapters. The third and fourth chapters read a bit better because the narrative finally begins to focus on M&H's actual love story (their first dates and courtship, etc), providing readers with previously unrevealed intimate details.

Another problem I have with the book is the way the roll-out happened with media excerpts which diluted any possible enjoyment of reading the book itself. I didn't read any of the excerpts, but there was no way I could avoid hearing reported details, since I follow news about the Sussexes online.

In my opinion, the publishers should have been more patient and allowed the writers more time to do a better job. I didn't have any expectations that the book was going to be anything more than the usual popular biography. But it is unfortunately rather disjointed and poorly written overall. They should have focused more exclusively on the Meghan and Harry love story and on the trajectory of their lives and personalities. I could have done without the insistence on trying to make excuses for different individuals and entities surrounding the whole gossipy tabloid drama. We aren't getting the truth about much of that anyway. And attempting to tell different versions from different palace sources while framing excuses, just doesn't work for me. In the long run, who Harry and Meghan are as individuals and as a couple I feel is far more interesting, thought-provoking and substantive.

But yeah, these type of popular biographies are usually heavy on the salacious gossip details, which are of the moment, conflicting and unresolved, exhausting, and ultimately provide less insight into the larger themes of what matters in the lives of the famous individual or couple who are being written about. As a writer, if you feel the need to bend over backward telling different versions of this side and that side without being able to tell the actual truth, then I think it's best to focus on substantive details and weightier themes that if well-researched and well-crafted can be more engaging, revealing and entertaining.
  #2192  
Old 08-30-2020, 12:31 PM
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Does anyone know how the sales of the book are going?
  #2193  
Old 08-30-2020, 12:42 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Lady Daly View Post
Does anyone know, have Harry and/or Meghan been interviewed or even asked for comment about this book? I haven't followed this thread consistently so I apologize if this has already been covered here.

It would be interesting to know if either one of them have actually read this book.
A representative of the Sussexes released a statement after excerpts began to appear in the media. The statement essentially indicated that the Sussexes did not contribute to the book nor review any drafts or final product prior to publication. There had been earlier reports from Omid I believe that the Sussexes did not authorize the biography, but they did allow their close friends to speak with the authors. So the book is largely based on the authors' research and interviews, coupled with their knowledge and experience as British royal reporters over the years.

I doubt that M&H have sat down and read the book, since they are the subjects of the book and they lived through what actually happened and thus probably aren't interested in viewing third hand media constructions. Their friends and representatives possibly have perused the book and discussed it with them briefly. But I doubt it is much of a heavy focus for the Sussexes. Meghan and Harry are clearly moving forward with forging a productive and happy life together with Archie in their new home.

I believe M&H have respect for Durand's and Scobie's professionalism and surely trusted the authors' intended fair-minded approach to writing the book, no matter how the final product has been received and perceived by the public.
  #2194  
Old 08-30-2020, 12:58 PM
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Originally Posted by Eskimo View Post
Does anyone know how the sales of the book are going?
I heard that the book topped the U.K. Amazon best seller list. And it also reached #1 in the U.S. But I don't know where the book currently stands on these lists. Since the book is known to contain intimate details provided to the authors by close friends of the Sussexes, it would be the nearest thing to having some specific accounts from the horses' mouths, I suppose.

See my previous thoughts for what I think overall about the book. It will likely continue to sell fairly well for the publishers. And I'm happy for Omid Scobie having this success. If he ever writes another book, I hope he learned from his experiences writing this one, and that he will hopefully take more time to produce a better written product. I'm not referencing Durand a lot, because I don't know that much about her. Omid is the one doing the vast majority of promotion for the book.

The presentation of the book itself is quite good. I love the front and back cover photographs. And they came up with a pretty good title. The inside color photograph section is good and probably based on what they were able to get permission to use. I would have liked to see more unexpected photos that aren't readily available on the Internet. Every photo in the book, I've already seen before. (The authors have practically nothing to do with the printing and publishing, nor with the selection of photographs).
  #2195  
Old 08-30-2020, 01:30 PM
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Originally Posted by MaiaMia_53 View Post
I heard that the book topped the U.K. Amazon best seller list. And it also reached #1 in the U.S. But I don't know where the book currently stands on these lists. Since the book is known to contain intimate details provided to the authors by close friends of the Sussexes, it would be the nearest thing to having some specific accounts from the horses' mouths, I suppose.

See my previous thoughts for what I think overall about the book. It will likely continue to sell fairly well for the publishers. And I'm happy for Omid Scobie having this success. If he ever writes another book, I hope he learned from his experiences writing this one, and that he will hopefully take more time to produce a better written product. I'm not referencing Durand a lot, because I don't know that much about her. Omid is the one doing the vast majority of promotion for the book.

The presentation of the book itself is quite good. I love the front and back cover photographs. And they came up with a pretty good title. The inside color photograph section is good and probably based on what they were able to get permission to use. I would have liked to see more unexpected photos that aren't readily available on the Internet. Every photo in the book, I've already seen before. (The authors have practically nothing to do with the printing and publishing, nor with the selection of photographs).
Well it is number on in European Royal books but 43 otherwise. That is on Amazon. It's a.one hit wonder book. As in sells big when it comes out and then nothing.
  #2196  
Old 08-30-2020, 01:51 PM
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It's too early to tell how the book will fare in sales long term. It's normal for the huge interest and anticipation to help such a book top best seller lists and then wane a bit. Plus all the media excerpts led to a feeding frenzy in the first weeks of publication.

After that, if such a book of this genre isn't well-written and there's nothing really substantial or groundbreaking in its contents, a lag or falling off in sales is to be expected. For me, the subjects' real lives are vastly more interesting than the book in any case. At least the book has provided accounts of some aspects of the Sussexes' courtship and their senior royal tenure that are generally fair-minded, compared to the tabloid nonsense that's spewed daily.

Books that are rushed out to make the most money in a short period of time are what they are. Sadly, this type of situation is a huge aspect of what keeps the publishing industry alive at the moment.
  #2197  
Old 08-30-2020, 01:57 PM
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Originally Posted by Lady Daly View Post
Does anyone know, have Harry and/or Meghan been interviewed or even asked for comment about this book? I haven't followed this thread consistently so I apologize if this has already been covered here.

It would be interesting to know if either one of them have actually read this book.
From the author's note (link to image of the author's note):
We have spoken with close friends of Harry and Meghan, royal aides and palace staff (past and present), the charities and organisations they have built long-lasting relationships with and, when appropriate, the couple themselves.


From an article on bbc.com (link):

A statement [from a spokesman for the Sussexes] said: "The Duke and Duchess of Sussex were not interviewed and did not contribute to Finding Freedom.
"This book is based on the authors' own experiences as members of the royal press corps and their own independent reporting."


The bbc linked statement was issued before the book became widely available. I am pretty sure that the Sussexes have been asked to comment but are choosing not to.

In an interview, Omid Scobie discussed the incident involving Meghan trying to get access to her wedding tiara, Harry intervened by going straight to The Queen. Harry issued a statement basically disputing that he had an angry demeanor when he discussed the matter with The Queen.


ETA:
correction to the above, Harry did not issue a statement about the tiara, it was reported as a source close to Prince Harry.
  #2198  
Old 08-30-2020, 02:04 PM
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Originally Posted by Queen Claude View Post
From the author's note (link to image of the author's note):
We have spoken with close friends of Harry and Meghan, royal aides and palace staff (past and present), the charities and organisations they have built long-lasting relationships with and, when appropriate, the couple themselves.


From an article on bbc.com (link):

A statement [from a spokesman for the Sussexes] said: "The Duke and Duchess of Sussex were not interviewed and did not contribute to Finding Freedom.
"This book is based on the authors' own experiences as members of the royal press corps and their own independent reporting."


The bbc linked statement was issued before the book became widely available. I am pretty sure that the Sussexes have been asked to comment but are choosing not to.

In an interview, Omid Scobie discussed the incident involving Meghan trying to get access to her wedding tiara, Harry intervened by going straight to The Queen. Harry issued a statement basically disputing that he had an angry demeanor when he discussed the matter with The Queen.
From the start the authors have refused to flat out deny that they talked to the couple - because they DID indeed talk to them as they admit themselves in the book; although apparently not as a 'formal interview for the book'.
  #2199  
Old 08-30-2020, 02:35 PM
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Originally Posted by Denville View Post
I think that Catherine didn't take to Meghan and probably vice versa. In spite of Harry's eagerly saying that she had met W and Cat and they all loved her... I think she was just wary of Meg and didn't find her congenial.. and didn't want to go shoppign with her.. Problaby felt too that M seemed super confident so she didn't need/want any advice on how to be a royal....
Agreed. If it had been me, I would have been burning up Catherine's phone with questions. She would have probably changed her number
  #2200  
Old 08-30-2020, 03:53 PM
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I beg to differ. Omid Scobie is a professional, fair-minded journalist, and a royalist to boot. He's nobody's mouthpiece, but his own. He's done a great job of being as diplomatic as possible in his reporting and writing, which frankly earns him my complete respect, regardless of my criticisms about the book, which I feel are mainly due to the publishers' demands and requirements.
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