The bonds between fathers and sons, as seen through the eye of their mothers
The Duchess of Sussex, Meghan Markle, already holds so many titles: she is a wife, a mother, feminist, activist, and now will be adding author to her list of accomplishments. Just a few days ago, the couple announced the birth of their daughter, with reference to both grandmother and great-grandmother naming her Lilibet “Lili” Diana Mountbatten-Windsor.
Fittingly, today, June 8th, 2021, marks the the release of Markle’s first children’s book.
The Duchess sweetly dedicates the book to “the man and the boy who make my heart go pump-pump”. “Lili” also holds a special place in her heart as her own mother Doria Ragland gave her the childhood nickname “Flower”. The Lilly flower happens to signify happiness and rebirth which gives their daughter name lots of symbolism and meaning to royal family’s newest (‘lil) addition.
The inspiration for the Duchess of Sussex’s first book started from a poem Megan wrote for Prince Harry after their son Archie was born for Father’s day. The poem then evolved into a story, the book will capture the special bond and relationship between fathers and sons from all walks of life, as described by mothers.
As news relating to the upcoming release of Markle’s debut book, reports began to surface speculating potential plagiarism with another children’s book “The Boy on the Bench” by Corrinne Averiss. The only real similarity between the two titles is they both have the word “bench”, aside from this, Averiss took to Twitter to defend the Duchess stating “I don’t see any similarities”.
“The Bench” includes illustrations by Christian Robinson, a Caldecott Award winner, who has worked with both Pixar and Sesame Street Workshop. Markle and Robinson worked together to make sure the final product was inclusive and shared a universal message every kind of family could relate to.
In a statement from Random House Children’s Books, Markle said “Christian layered in beautiful and ethereal watercolor illustrations that capture the warmth, joy, and comfort of the relationship between fathers and sons from all walks of life,” and continued to say “This representation was particularly important to me, and Christian and I worked closely to depict this special bond through an inclusive lens.
My hope is that The Bench resonates with every family, no matter the makeup, as much as it does with mine.”
“The Bench” will mark the latest venture for the Duchess after stepping back from the Royal Family and moving to the United States in 2020. Prince Harry and Meghan have also launched a podcast in partnership with Spotify Archewell Audio. The two also have plans to work on a Netflix documentary based on the Invictus Games which the Prince founded back in 2014.
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