Royal Expert Says King Charles Should Have Publicly Shown Reconciliation and Forgiveness to Prince Harry Over His Memoir ‘Spare’

“I want Charles and William to…just extend that hand over the Atlantic like Jesus on water.”

King Charles, Prince William, Prince Harry
(Image credit: Getty)

Following the release of Prince Harry’s bombshell memoir, Spare, this past January, royal expert Dr. Tessa Dunlop said on the “To Di for Daily” podcast that his father, King Charles, should have undertaken a public “act of compassion” towards his younger son after the book’s publication.

Heretofore, the royal family hasn’t commented on Spare, but, according to The Daily Express, Dunlop said she would have preferred to have seen a more out front act of forgiveness towards the Duke of Sussex. She continued that the tell-all was not meant to “bring down his dear Papa,” but rather that Harry comes across as sympathetic—a trait Dunlop wishes to be shown publicly again by the Firm. 

Prince Harry and King Charles in top hats

(Image credit: Getty)

“I feel Charles, I kind of know this actually—he’s a kind man,” Dunlop said. “We all have failings. Even Harry in his book doesn’t really ever bring down his dear Papa.” Instead, although Harry does portray Charles as an “inattentive father,” he is also a father that doesn’t “undercut his son” but instead “shows sympathy,” Dunlop said, adding “I want him to do his best again.”

When asked by the podcast’s host Kinsey Schofield whether the infamous “never complain, never explain” mentality was the right way to handle the Spare situation, Dunlop said she would have preferred to see the king and Prince William extend an olive branch publicly. With the “difficulty” of being born into the “nonsense” of the royal family, she said, Dunlop would have liked to have seen “an act of compassion” extended towards Harry from senior working royals in the public arena. 

King Charles, Prince William, Prince Harry

(Image credit: Getty)

“I felt that [Charles, William, and Princess Catherine] could have offered the hand of reconciliation and, really, forgiveness, which is required on their part because he’s been a bit public and underhand by Harry to say the least,” Dunlop said. “I would have liked to have seen that done more publicly, for me personally. In a country as entrenched in its own history as much as ours, it is very difficult to take on an institution…particularly if it’s one your own family belong to.”

Dunlop said of Spare “I still feel conflicted. I feel that he [Harry] did something quite brave. He did it in a slightly foolish way, and I want Charles and William to recognize their larger, more important, better-funded positions and just extend that hand over the Atlantic like Jesus on water.” 

Rachel Burchfield
Senior Celebrity and Royals Editor

Rachel Burchfield is a writer, editor, and podcaster whose primary interests are fashion and beauty, society and culture, and, most especially, the British Royal Family and other royal families around the world. She serves as Marie Claire’s Senior Celebrity and Royals Editor and has also contributed to publications like Allure, Cosmopolitan, Elle, Glamour, Harper’s Bazaar, InStyle, People, Vanity Fair, Vogue, and W, among others. Before taking on her current role with Marie Claire, Rachel served as its Weekend Editor and later Royals Editor. She is the cohost of Podcast Royal, a show that was named a top five royal podcast by The New York Times. A voracious reader and lover of books, Rachel also hosts I’d Rather Be Reading, which spotlights the best current nonfiction books hitting the market and interviews the authors of them. Rachel frequently appears as a media commentator, and she or her work has appeared on outlets like NBC’s Today Show, ABC’s Good Morning America, CNN, and more.