Harry's Much-Leaked Memoir Breaks a Record Anyway

For first-day sales of nonfiction books in the UK
By Evann Gastaldo,  Newser Staff
Posted Jan 11, 2023 2:00 AM CST
Updated Jan 11, 2023 6:32 AM CST
Harry Memoir Breaks First-Day Sales Record
Copies of the new book by Prince Harry called "Spare" are shrink-wrapped before being displayed in a bookstore in Paris, Tuesday, Jan. 10, 2023.   (AP Photo/Thibault Camus)

The early leak of Prince Harry's memoir didn't stop it from breaking the UK record for first-day sales of a nonfiction book, which it did on Tuesday when it was released. "We always knew this book would fly but it is exceeding even our most bullish expectations," Transworld Penguin Random House Managing Director Larry Finlay said in a statement cited by Reuters. Spare has reportedly sold 400,000 hard copies, e-books, and audiobooks altogether so far. "As far as we know, the only books to have sold more in their first day are those starring the other Harry (Potter)," Finlay said.

Much like a Harry Potter release, the BBC reports that some UK bookstores opened at midnight to sell the 407-page book to people who waited in line to be among the first to buy it. And of that aforementioned leak, a director at Barnes & Noble says it "has only heightened the frenzy and is drawing customers into our bookstores in amazing numbers." But the Guardian notes that the book is being sold for half of the suggested retail price at popular outlets including Amazon (a move one expert says is normal for a highly anticipated release like this), and calls lines for the book in some locations "sparse." (More Prince Harry stories.)

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