Topping the bestseller lists and creating headlines around the world, Prince Harry’s memoir Spare is the book everyone is talking about.
From claims his brother Prince William physically attacked him to losing his virginity to an older woman in a field behind a pub, the revelations have not stopped coming.
For those celeb-spotters out there, there’s another reason to get stuck into the 410-page book – it’s packed with stars. Here are some of Prince Harry‘s biggest name drops, and what he got up to with them.
The Spice Girls
Prince Harry remembers being “thrilled and baffled” by the news he would be hanging out with Nelson Mandela and the Spice Girls while accompanying his father on a trip to South Africa in 1997.
The Spice Girls had a big concert in Johannesburg and were calling in on President Mandela to pay their respects.
Harry says his father – who he calls Pa – had engineered the meeting for some good PR.
“The truth was, Pa’s staff hoped a photo of him standing alongside the world’s most revered political leader and the world’s most popular female musical act would earn him some positive headlines, which he sorely needed. Since Mummy’s disappearance he’s been savaged.”
Calling it “a work trip”, Harry goes on: “The Spice Girls concert represented my first public appearance since the funeral and I knew, through intuition, through bits of overheard conversations, that the public’s curiosity about my welfare was running high.
“I remember stepping on to the red carpet, screwing a smile on my face, suddenly wishing I was in my bed at St James’ Palace. Beside me was Baby Spice, wearing white plastic shoes with chunky twelve-inch platform heels.
“I fixated on those heels while she fixated on my cheeks. She kept pinching them. So chubby! So cute! Then Posh Spice surged forward and clutched my hand.
“Further down the line I spied Ginger Spice, the only Spice with whom I felt a real connection – a fellow ginger.”
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We may not have much in common with Prince Harry’s day-to-day life, but there’s one thing we can relate to – he’s a big Friends fan.
He says he spent so much time at home watching the US sitcom while eating takeaway, “it’s possible that in 2013 I watched all the Friends episodes”.
Unlike Harry, however, not many of us have hung out at Monica’s house.
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Recalling a visit to the US with a pal in January 2016, Harry ends up at a party at Courteney Cox’s mansion.
“She was a friend of Thomas’ girlfriend, and had more room,” he says. “Also, she was travelling, on a job and didn’t mind if we crashed at her place.
“No complaints from me. As a Friends fanatic, the idea of crashing at Monica’s was highly appealing. And amusing. But then… Courtney turned up.
“I was very confused. Was her job cancelled? I didn’t think it was my place to ask. More: Does this mean we have to leave?
“She smiled. Of course not, Harry. Plenty of room.”
Harry goes on to admit he had quite the crush on Cox: “She was Monica. And I was a Chandler. I wondered if I’d ever work up the courage to tell her. Was there enough tequila in California to get me that brave?”
The party hots up, Harry meets “Batman from the LEGO movie” – Will Arnett we presume – and with his help Harry moves on from tequila to something a little more trippy.
“He led my mate and me to the fridge, from which he extracted a soft drink. While the door was open, we spotted a huge box of black diamond magic mushroom chocolates.
“Someone behind said they were for everybody. Help yourself boys. My mate and I grabbed several, gobbled them, washed them down with tequila.
“We waited for Batman to indulge as well. But he didn’t. Not his thing or something. Howdya like that, we said. This bloke’s just sent us by ourselves into the f***ing Batcave.”
One of the best-selling female music artists of all time, Rihanna agreed to hook up with Harry in Barbados to encourage people to get tested for HIV.
Pretty exciting right? Well, turns out Harry was a bit distracted by his girlfriend at the time, Meghan Markle.
Here’s what he had to say: “The occasion was the upcoming World AIDS day and I’d asked Rihanna, at the last minute, to join me, help raise awareness across the Caribbean. To my shock, she’d said yes.
“November 2016. Important day, vital cause, but my head wasn’t in the game. I was worried about Meg. She couldn’t go home because her house was surrounded by paps…
“I turned to Rihanna and we chatted while I awaited the result. Negative. Now I just wanted to run, find somewhere with Wi-Fi, check on Meg.”
Hopefully he stuck around for long enough to thank Rihanna for coming along…
Prince Harry had a short-lived romance with presenter Caroline Flack in 2009. In his book he opens up about meeting her in a restaurant with friends, dodging paparazzi together and eventually going their separate ways due to press harassment.
Calling her “funny, sweet and cool”, he says he met her a few months after splitting up with the socialite Chelsy Davy.
Despite Flack being a pretty famous presenter at the time, Harry says he didn’t know who she was as “I don’t watch much TV” and struggled a bit to remember her name.
Luckily, she didn’t take offence and they met a few days later for dinner and poker. Further dates ensued, but after being photographed together Harry says: “Those photos set off a frenzy.
“Within hours a mob was camped outside Flack’s parents’ house, and all her friends’ houses, and her grandmother’s house.
“She was described in one paper as ‘my bit of rough’ – because she’d once worked in a factory or something. Jesus, I thought, are we really such a country of insufferable snobs?”
He says they continued to see each other “on and off, but we didn’t feel free any more”. He goes on: “The relationship was tainted, irredeemably, and in time we agreed that it just wasn’t worth the grief and harassment. Especially for her family.”
Flack also mentioned the relationship in her 2014 autobiography, Storm In A C Cup.
The Love Island presenter took her own life aged 40 in February 2020. Later in the book, Harry mentions her death, writing: “Caroline Flack, a very good friend of mine, had taken her own life. By the looks of things, she couldn’t bear it anymore.
“The years of constant harassment by the press had killed her. I felt awful for her family. I can’t forget how much she suffered for her fatal sin of going out with me.”
Harry’s mention of his former flame has not gone down well in all quarters. Flack’s former agent has hit out at him for repeating “long forgotten slurs” and called for him to be stripped of his titles.
Lots of teenage boys spend time looking at models. But not many get to meet them in the flesh.
While you might expect it to be the moment of many boys’ dreams, Harry says it was actually “very confusing”.
Thanks to the help of a therapist, who helped him recall previously forgotten memories, he says he remembered meeting the biggest supermodels of the 90s with his brother when he was a teenager.
He writes: “I remembered Willy and me joining her for a chat with Christy Turlington, Claudia Schiffer and Cindy Crawford.
“Very confusing. Especially for two shy boys, at or about the age of puberty.”
Among the most photographed models of the time, Turlington, Schiffer and Crawford frequently featured on magazine covers, runways and in fashion campaigns throughout Harry’s teenage years.
Sir Elton John
They first met when Sir Elton John rewrote Candle In The Wind for his mother’s funeral, but Harry has since become firm friends with the Rocketman hitmaker.
But they’ve had their disagreements too.
In his memoir, Harry says he was less than happy when he discovered Sir Elton would be publishing his own no-holds barred memoir in instalments in the Daily Mail.
Harry says he questioned why he had chosen the newspaper he claimed had made Sir Elton’s life “miserable”.
He says Sir Elton said he “wanted people to read it”, adding: “Where better than the very newspaper that has been so poisonous to me my whole life?”
Saying he was sweating as they chatted, Harry goes on: “I reminded him of the specific lies the Mail had famously printed about him. Hell – he’d sued them, just over a decade earlier, after they claimed he forbade people at a charity event from speaking to him.
“They’d ultimately written him a cheque for a hundred thousand pounds. I reminded him that he’d stirringly said in one interview: They can say that I’m a fat old c***. They can say that I’m an untalented b******. They can call me a p***. But they mustn’t lie about me.”
Harry says he did not want to “push” the matter, adding: “I loved him. I’ll always love him. And I also didn’t want to spoil the holiday.”
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Later, Harry says it was Sir Elton and his husband David Furnish who inspired him to sue press outlets directly if he believed they had used illegal means to access information about him, rather than trying to persuade the palace to fight on his behalf.
He says they told him about “an acquaintance of theirs who was a lawyer, a charming chap who knew the wiretapping scandal better than anyone”.
Both Harry and Sir Elton are among a group of celebrities suing the Daily Mail publisher over alleged bugging, impersonation and accessing bank accounts. Associated Newspapers denies the claims.
And two celebs Harry hasn’t met
Despite tabloid stories saying otherwise, Harry insists he’s never had a thing with Cameron Diaz.
Recalling press interest in his failure to marry by his late 20s, he writes: “They dredged up every relationship I’d ever had, every girl I’d ever been seen with, put it all into a blender, hired ‘experts’, aka quacks, to try to make sense of it.
“Books about me dived into my love life, homed in on each romantic failure and near miss.
“I seem to recall one detailing my flirtation with Cameron Diaz. ‘Harry just couldn’t see himself with her, the author reported’.
“Indeed, I couldn’t, since we’d never met. I was never within 50 metres of Ms Diaz, further proof that if you like reading pure b******s then royal biographies are just your thing.”
He also says he never met Christina Aguilera, despite briefly thinking he did.
At another house party, with “more tequila… and more mushrooms”, Harry says: “We all started playing some kind of game, some kind of charades – I think?
“Someone handed me a joint. Lovely. I took a hit, looked at the rinsed creamy blue of the California sky. Someone tapped me on the shoulder, said they wanted me to meet Christina Aguilera. Oh, hello, Christina.
“She looked rather mannish. No, apparently, I’d misheard, it wasn’t Christina, it was the guy who co-wrote one of her songs. Genie in a Bottle. Did I know the lyrics? Did he tell me the lyrics?
“Anyway, he’d made a boatload from those lyrics, and now lived in high style. Good for you, mate.”
Harry then heads back to Courteney Cox’s beachfront house, just another chapter in his royal life.