Some lucky Londoners are getting an extra surprise with Kate Middleton’s new photography book.
The Duchess of Cambridge hid copies of her new book all around the U.K. and included a personal message for fortunate readers.
Kate’s new book is titled Hold Still: A Portrait of Our Nation In 2020. Launched in conjunction with the National Portrait Gallery, the book features portraits from people of all ages in the U.K. during the pandemic lockdown. Each portrait is accompanied by the story behind the picture, as well. The final portraits featured in the book were also shown in a digital exhibition before being displayed across the U.K.
Proceeds from the book will be split between the National Portrait Gallery and Mind, a mental health charity, to support arts and mental health projects across the U.K.
Kate Hid Copies of the New Book With a Surprise Inside
To mark the release of Hold Still, Kate joined up with The Book Fairies, a U.K.-based non-profit whose sole purpose is sharing books by leaving them in places for people to discover. Kate took part by hiding 150 copies of her book in secret locations.
The royal shared photos and video of her outing on social media. Dressed in red, Kate can be seen placing a book in front of the Queen Victoria Memorial statue at Kensington Palace. She also paid visits to the Royal London Hospital, and the National Portrait Gallery.
Each shared book features a gold ribbon and a gold Book Fairies sticker. The hidden copies of Hold Still also included a personal message tucked inside. The letter, addressed to “Finder,” is typed on Kensington Palace stationary and signed by the Duchess of Cambridge herself.
“The Hold Still book documents a photography project which captured a portrait of our nation as we lived through the first COVID-19 lockdown last year,” the letter reads. “The images tell the stories of the challenges we all faced, but also how we came together in the most extraordinary of times.”
“I am proud to have worked closely with the National Portrait Gallery on this project, and thrilled that the Book Fairies across the country are returning the images to the communities at the heart of Hold Still,” Kate wrote.
But the letter also included special instructions for the lucky finder, on what to do with the book when they are done: “Once you have finished looking through the book, please leave it somewhere else in your community for the next person to enjoy.”
At the bottom, the note is signed, “With my very best wishes, Catherine.”
Getting Your Hands on a Copy
In addition to the books hidden by Kate, other copies were placed around the U.K. by the Hold Still judges and participants of the final 100 photos used in the book.
For anyone hoping for a copy of Hold Still that didn’t manage to find one of Kate’s hidden books, they are on sale now in U.K. bookstores and online — including through the National Portrait Gallery.