28/07/2020 1:17 PM AEST

New Book Traces Roots Of Prince Harry's Rift With Prince William

In 'Finding Freedom,' authors Omid Scobie and Carolyn Durand explore the origins of the brothers' crumbling relationship.

The beginnings of the rift between brothers Prince Harry and Prince William are explored in the widely anticipated book ‘Finding Freedom’ by royal insiders Omid Scobie and Carolyn Durand.  

Selections from the book were serialised over the weekend in The Times, dishing out details on Harry and Meghan’s first date, the Duchess of Sussex’s relationship with Kate Middleton, and the soured ties between the Sussexes, the royal family, and their aides and courtiers. 

The book asserts that the brothers’ division began with the Duke of Cambridge’s comments about Harry’s new relationship with Meghan Markle. William apparently worried that Harry was “blindsided by lust,” when he first met the “Suits” actor, and cautioned him against moving too fast. 

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William and Harry walk through a trench during the commemorations for the 100th anniversary of the battle of Vimy Ridge on April 9, 2017, in Lille, France.

“Don’t feel you need to rush this,” William cautioned his brother, according to the book excerpts. “Take as much time as you need to get to know this girl.”

Harry was put off by the talk ― particularly the words “this girl” ― and “could see through William’s words,” the authors wrote. An anonymous friend quoted in the book said of William: “He was being a snob.”

The brothers became distanced after the talk, and invites from the Cambridges for Harry to see his niece and nephew “dried up,” the book says. The relationship became even more strained after Harry and Meghan’s royal wedding. 

Royal aides and courtiers also apparently had a lot to say about Meghan when she arrived on the scene. The book says some palace employees distrusted her and called her “Harry’s showgirl.” One said “she comes with a lot of baggage,” according to the book. 

Kensington Palace had no comment when reached by HuffPost Monday. 

A spokesperson for the Sussexes said in a statement to HuffPost that the couple did not participate in the book.  

“The Duke and Duchess of Sussex were not interviewed and did not contribute to ‘Finding Freedom,‘” the statement said. “This book is based on the authors’ own experiences as members of the royal press corps and their own independent reporting.” 

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The Cambridges and Sussexes attend the Commonwealth Day Service on March 9, 2020, in London.

In October, Harry addressed talk of a rift between he and his older brother in the ITV documentary ‘Harry & Meghan: An African Journey’. 

“We are brothers. We will always be brothers,” the Duke of Sussex told journalist Tom Bradby. “We are certainly on different paths at the moment but I will always be there for him as I know he will always be there for me.”

Harry added: “We don’t see each other as much as we used to because we are so busy but I love him dearly. The majority of the stuff is created out of nothing but as brothers, you know, you have good days, you have bad days.” 

Bradby spoke about the brothers’ relationship in an interview with “Good Morning Britain” in January. 

“There are lots of people, who would love there to be ― including I think the brothers themselves ― love them to be closer again,” Bradby said. “And with any luck that will happen. But with families, we all know stuff happens, things are said.”  

On the day of Bradby’s interview, the Duke and Duchess of Sussex announced their plans to step back as working members of the royal family and pursue financial independence. They officially stepped down on March 31 and have been staying in Los Angeles with their son Archie.