Meghan Markle’s book The Bench fails to make bestseller list on release day

Meghan Markle's new book has failed to break Amazon's top 200 bestsellers list on its release day.

The Bench hit physical and virtual shelves in Britain on Tuesday morning, with the Duchess of Sussex making her first venture into children's books which she announced last month.

After receiving mixed reviews, with some criticising the book for its supposed lack of action and poor grammar, Meghan has been hit with another blow regarding sales figures.

The Bench falls four books shy of Amazon's top 200 bestsellers, and has only made it to 60 on the same website's list of bestselling children's books.

Meanwhile Kate Middleton's photography book continues to soar weeks after it went on sale, The Express reports.

The Duchess of Sussex's new book, called The Bench, was inspired by Prince Harry and their son, Archie. It developed out of a poem Meghan wrote for husband Prince Harry on Father's Day and was released in the UK today.

The book has been savaged by some, with one critic calling it "semi-literate".

Claire Allfree, the Telegraph's critic, 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.

"But that's planet Sussex for you, where even the business of raising a family is all about the brand."

She also noted that Harry is portrayed as someone sitting on a bench while Meghan "gets on and conquers the world".

The Times' Alex Connell described it as a "self-help manual for needy parents", adding: "The story [is] so lacking in action and jeopardy you half wonder if the writing job was delegated to a piece of furniture…"

Meghan's book was also widely panned by critics on Amazon, with many giving it a one star review.

Where to buy Meghan Duchess of Sussex's children's book 'The Bench'

Buy now from Amazon for £9.99

Buy now from WHSmith for £9.99

Buy now from Waterstones for £9.99

Buy now from Afrori for £12.90

One person said: "We didn't enjoy this book at all – I have no idea why the author thought this story would appeal to children. It's incredibly boring and uninspiring.

"Clearly based on the author's life, it would have perhaps been better as a private project kept within the family that they can read themselves, and then treasure in the future.

"For anyone else, it's just completely irrelevant. The grammar is also questionable at times. Absolutely do not recommend."

However others praised the "sweet story with beautiful illustrations".

Another pleased Amazon customer wrote: “I find the way the book explores the relationship between father and son through the mother's eyes very warm and cute.”

Representatives for Meghan Markle have been approached for comment.

It comes weeks after the Duchess of Cambridge released her photograph contest book, Hold Still.

Kate's book soared to the top of the bestseller list on the day of its release and became the second highest-selling book out of all titles on Amazon.

Hold Still: A Portrait of Our Nation in 2020 – which features 100 final 'poignant and personal' portraits selected from 31,000 entrants – remains on the list and is ranked 113 in overall bestsellers.

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