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Meghan Markle, Harry slammed for pricey short audiobook

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Meghan Markle, Harry slammed for pricey short audiobook

Royal commentators, ever eager to criticize Meghan Markle and Prince Harry, have reacted with horror and derision to the duchess’ release of her 107-second children’s audiobook of her recently published title, Express reports.

One critic of Meghan Markle’s audiobook, which she released after she and Harry gave a series of controversial interviews in which they lambasted the royal family, noted that it is so short and disproportionately pricey, it costs 8 cents per word.

Slammed as a juvenile and amateurish effort on the part of Meghan Markle, who married Harry in May 2018 and recently gave birth to their second child, the audiobook of “The Bench” proved so unpopular that its price was slashed in half within hours of its release.

The audiobook is retailing for an astonishing $15.

It also makes it one of Amazon’s most expensive audiobooks.

Meghan Markle’s ‘semi-literate’ children’s audiobook costs 5.6 pence per WORD

The audiobook’s release has only thrown gasoline on the bonfire of criticism of Meghan Markle and Harry.

In The Telegraph, Claire Allfree wrote: “One wonders how any publisher could have thought fit to publish this grammar-defying set of badly rhyming cod homilies, let alone think any child anywhere would want to read it.”

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Allfree went on to say: “But that’s planet Sussex for you, where even the business of raising a family is all about the brand.”

The Daily Mail reports that the children’s book and its accompanying pricey audiobook were inspired by a poem that Meghan Markle wrote for Harry’s first Father’s Day directly after the birth of their first child, Archie Harrison Mountbatten-Windsor, in May 2019.

Meghan’s novel is already part of a ‘buy one get one half price’ deal at a WHSmith store in Newcastle city centre.

Meghan Markle’s 107-second audiobook version of her children’s title The Bench costs 5.6p-per-WORD – one of the most expensive on Amazon despite critics branding it a ‘semi-literate vanity project’

Critics of Meghan Markle and Harry have excoriated her book and associated audiobook as a “vanity project.” 

One trashed it as a “self-help manual for needy parents” while another called it “semi-literate.”

The Daily Mail questioned a passerby in Newcastle about Meghan Markle and Harry and the release of her audiobook, prompting the reply: “She’s trying to make a name for herself any way she can.”

The Sydney Morning Herald reports that Meghan’s book, the text of which is in rhymes, is illustrated in watercolor by Christian Robinson.

Markle’s rhyming narrative is complemented by illustrator Christian Robinson’s watercolour images, showing families of different skin colours and backgrounds, from a light-skinned soldier returning home (Harry served in Afghanistan) to a dark-skinned man in dreadlocks, from a boy carrying a soccer trophy to a boy and his father wearing pink tutus.

Meghan’s new picture book panned as ‘semi-literate vanity project’

The Sydney Morning Herald

The book and audiobook’s publisher, Random House, says it is a portrait of “the special relationships between fathers and sons, through a mother’s eyes.”

Royal critics reacted with horror to the fact that despite her having said that royal titles don’t matter to her in her and Harry’s recent Oprah Winfrey interview, she went by “Meghan, Duchess of Sussex” on the book’s cover.

In her review of the book for The Telegraph, Allfree cringed at what she saw as Meghan Markle’s emasculation of Harry in her book and associated audiobook.

“Poor Harry’s role in this marriage is to sit on his bench holding the baby while Meghan gets on and conquers the world, one act of compassion at a time,” she wrote.

The Bench, published worldwide today and apparently based on a poem Meghan wrote for Harry on Father’s Day, is presented as a story for children. But it’s nothing of the sort, not least since it’s not a story. Rather it’s a series of imperatives disguised as loving verse in which Meghan offers words of wisdom to Harry (represented throughout as a sort of racially inclusive, everyman paternal figure) and by implication to the rest of us, on how to handle the tricky business of loving a child.

The Bench review: the Duchess of Sussex’s semi-literate vanity project leaves Harry holding the baby

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Florida woman accused of slugging girlfriend after she slept-talk about her ex

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Florida woman accused of slugging girlfriend after she slept-talk about her ex

A Florida woman was arrested for allegedly slugging her girlfriend in the face after hearing her sleep-talk about an ex, a report said.

Alexis Talley, 23, woke up her 21-year-old girlfriend after the sleep-talking episode and told her that “she was talking in her sleep about an ex,” according to an arrest report obtained by The Smoking Gun.

The two started arguing inside their Tampa Bay-area apartment late on June 13 and the feud escalated when Talley allegedly socked the victim in the face.

The victim suffered swelling to the right side of her face, police said.

Talley admitted to verbally fighting with her girlfriend, but denied hitting her, according to cops.

Police arrested Talley and charged her with domestic battery.

She posted a $2,500 bond and was ordered by a judge to stay away from the victim.

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Iran shuts down nuclear power plant for emergency repairs

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A worker rides a bicycle in front of the reactor building of the Bushehr nuclear power plant, just outside the southern city of Bushehr. Iran’s sole nuclear power plant has undergone a temporary emergency shutdown, state TV reported on Sunday, June 20.

Iran’s lone nuclear power plant was temporarily shut down over an unexplained emergency, according to the authoritarian nation’s state-run media.

An official from government energy company Tavanir said Sunday the Bushehr plant shutdown began on Saturday for repair work that would last “for three to four days,” possibly causing power outages.

It’s the first time Iran has reported an emergency shutdown of the plant, which was built with Russian backing as part of a nonproliferation agreement.

Nuclear officials warned three months ago that US imposed sanctions on Russia, Iran’s nuclear partner, could bring production at the plant to a halt.

Iran has been unable to procure parts and equipment for the plant since the sanctions took hold in 2018.

Bushehr is fueled by Russia-produced uranium. It’s monitored by the United Nations’ International Atomic Energy Agency, which did not comment on reports of the shutdown.

The plant sits near active fault lines and has been previously shaken by temblors, but there has been no significant seismic activity near the port city in recent days.

With AP wires

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US borders with Mexico and Canada to remain closed for another month

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US borders with Mexico and Canada to remain closed for another month

The US borders with Mexico and Canada will remain closed to all non-essential travel for at least another month to limit the spread of the coronavirus.

The extension of the restrictions, which have been in place since March 2020, was announced by the Department of Homeland Security on Twitter. 

“To reduce the spread of #COVID19, the United States is extending restrictions on non-essential travel at our land and ferry crossings with Canada and Mexico through July 21, while ensuring access for essential trade & travel,” DHS wrote.

The agency added that US officials have been discussing reopening strategies with representatives from both bordering countries. 

“DHS also notes positive developments in recent weeks and is participating with other U.S. agencies in the White House’s expert working groups with Canada and Mexico to identify the conditions under which restrictions may be eased safely and sustainably,” the agency tweeted. 

Last week, Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau said the border would stay largely closed until 75 percent of Canadians receive the first of a two-dose coronavirus vaccine and 20 percent get both shots.

With Post wires

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