The royal family wants to move on from the “soap opera” surrounding the Duke and Duchess of Sussex’s departure from their official roles, according to senior palace sources.
Since their departure for a new life in Los Angeles without official duties, Harry and Meghan are said to have been looking forward to the publication of a book that claims to reveal their “true story”.
But when the tell-all biography charting the Sussexes’ decision to move to America is released this summer, the royal family will remain tight-lipped.
Finding Freedom: Harry and Meghan and the Making of a Modern Royal Family is understood to have been written with the Sussexes’ blessing. It is expected to give their version of events behind a reportedly strained relationship with the institution and a rumoured rift with the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge.
A senior palace source said: “The rest of the royal family will not be telling their side of the story. They feel that in this new world, people are more interested in seeing the family support frontline workers than reading about their internal politics.
“It was a soap opera. Everyone knows the narrative that’s coming. The feeling is that drama and everything that comes with it has left. Let the rest of the royal family get on with it.”
Senior members of the royal family are understood to have been briefed about the book. Contrary to reports of “fears” over the “bombshell” biography, a royal source said: “It’s just not a hot topic of conversation in the family. They have had so many books written about them that have lobbed some hefty bombs over the sides. They’re used to it.”
Written by Omid Scobie, a former reporter for the American tabloid Us Weekly, and Carolyn Durand, a reporter for Elle magazine, the book will be published by HarperCollins on August 11.
A spokesman for the Sussexes said the couple were “relaxed” about the authors’ access to people “close to them” but denied they had actively assisted with the book.
“There has been no organising from our side in terms of who they have spoken to. It is not an official, authorised or endorsed book. The authors have not had interviews with the duke and duchess. We have asked to see a copy ahead of publication.”
Some previous royal biographies written with collaboration have not gone down well in royal circles. The Queen Mother said she was “deeply shocked” to discover that Diana, Princess of Wales had helped to “wash the dirty linen in public” by assisting Andrew Morton with his book, Diana: Her True Story, which detailed her struggles within the royal family and the breakdown of her marriage to the Prince of Wales.
The Queen and the Duke of Edinburgh were said to be dismayed by Prince Charles’s admission to Jonathan Dimbleby in his 1994 biography, that he had felt “emotionally estranged” from his parents for much of his life.
The biographer AN Wilson, who has written books on the Queen, Prince Albert and Queen Victoria, said last week: “In a way, there is no mystery left. Meghan will tell us nothing we could not have made up for ourselves.”