Northlanders line up to borrow Prince Harry’s memoir ‘Spare’ from public libraries

Prince Harry, left, discusses his controversial book ‘Spare’ with US host Stephen Colbert during a taping of ‘The Late Show with Stephen Colbert’.

Prince Harry’s memoir Spare is proving popular in Northland, as waiting lists for the controversial tome grow at the region’s public libraries.

The Duke of Sussex’s book, released last Tuesday, is full of revelations that include how his brother, Prince William, pushed him during an argument, and the abuse and alleged racism against his wife Meghan.

Despite Spare causing plenty of public consternation, it has become an international best seller. However, with a price tag of up to $65, many are turning to their local library to get their hands on a copy.

A spokesperson for the region’s largest library, the Whangārei District Library, said all four of its copies of Spare were loaned out, and 62 people were already on the waitlist as of Monday.


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“That’s quite a lot of people waiting, and there’s been so much interest in it. We had five holds on it before New Year, well before it was even released, and we’re just getting more and more holds on it.”

They said the huge interest in the book had drawn the largest waitlists seen since books about another Harry – Harry Potter – were released in the late 1990s and early 2000s.

Prince Harry’s book 'Spare' has divided people across the globe and is in demand at Northland’s public libraries, with big waiting lists for the book.
Prince Harry’s book ‘Spare’ has divided people across the globe and is in demand at Northland’s public libraries, with big waiting lists for the book.

The library may buy more copies if the number of people waiting for it increases further, the spokesperson said.

In Kaipara, five people are waiting to read the only copy of Spare available at the Dargaville Library.


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A library spokesperson said the publicity about the book and its cost meant there was a lot of interest in people borrowing it from the library. The library may get more copies if the demand grows further.

Kerikeri’s Procter Library is getting five copies of Spare in normal print: two copies in large print and one audiobook version.

Despite the copies not even having arrived yet, many people were already on the waitlist, a spokesperson for the library said.

“We have 27 people waiting for the normal print version; two for the large print version and five for the audiobook.

“We had quite a few people asking about it last week when it first came out, and we are now waiting for our copies.”

The story is the same at Kaitāia Library, which is ready to get its print and audiobook copies of Spare.

A spokesperson said 30 people were on the waitlist for the print copies and 15 for the audiobook version.

“That’s quite a lot of people on hold already,” the spokesperson said.

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