Meghan Markle's First Children's Book Was Inspired By Prince Harry And Archie

The Duchess of Sussex's debut, The Bench, stems from a poem she wrote for her husband to mark his first Father's Day.
By Jessica Pollack, Today's Parent
Meghan, holding a baby Archie, and Prince Harry (Photo: Toby Melville – Pool/Getty Images)

Meghan Markle is one busy mama. The former working royal is adding children's book author to her list of accomplishments with her new debut, The Bench, inspired by her husband Prince Harry and their son, Archie. And it sounds like the perfect Father's Day gift.

Inspired by the relationship between fathers and sons, as seen through the eyes of a mother, the book comes out on June 8, weeks before the couple will welcome a new baby girl.

The cover of Meghan Markle's new book, The Bench, shows a bench under a tree with birds around it, with the credit Pictures by Christian Robinson Book cover: Penguin Random House

According to the press release, diversity was a focus for Meghan, who looked at the "many ways that love can take shape and be expressed in a modern family.”

The book follows these special relationships over time. "Evoking a deep sense of warmth, connection, and compassion, The Bench gives readers a window into shared and enduring moments between a diverse group of fathers and sons—moments of peace and reflection, trust and belief, discovery and learning, and lasting comfort."

Meghan explained in a statement that her own family, Prince Harry and their almost-two-year-old son Archie, were her inspiration.

illustration from Meghan Markle's Childrens book showing a dad and baby taking a nap outside Illustration: Penguin Random House

"The Bench started as a poem I wrote for my husband on Father’s Day, the month after Archie was born,” said the soon-to-be mom of two. “That poem became this story."

Meghan worked with bestselling artist Christian Robinson on the illustrations, focussing on making the visuals as inclusive as possible. "Christian layered in beautiful and ethereal watercolour illustrations that capture the warmth, joy and comfort of the relationship between fathers and sons from all walks of life; this representation was particularly important to me, and Christian and I worked closely to depict this special bond through an inclusive lens."

"My hope," Meghan added, "is that The Bench resonates with every family, no matter the makeup, as much as it does with mine."

illustration from Meghan Markles' Childrens book showing a dad holding his child after coming back from the military. A mom watches from the nearby window Illustration: Penguin Random House

The first-time author will also be voicing the audiobook, available in Canada via Listening Library (an imprint of the Penguin Random House Audio Publishing Group).

This family has a lot to celebrate in the coming weeks, aside form Meghan's book debut. Archie turns two on May 6 and we're sure his parents have some fun surprises up their sleeves (including a FaceTime with the Queen, we'd guess). May 19 marks Harry and Meghan's third wedding anniversary, and this summer the family will welcome their newest member—a little girl.

We bet she'll inspire book number two!


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