Britney Spears book: what is the heartbreak origin behind her middle name?

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Britney Spears memoir The Woman In Me has been published around the globe

Britney Spears has lifted the lid on the heartbreaking origin behind her middle name in her highly anticipated memoir.

The pop icon's book - The Woman In Me - was published around the globe on Tuesday, 24 October. Initially announced in 2022, it was reported that Spears had signed a blockbuster $15m deal for the book.

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The title comes from a line in her 2001 track "I'm Not a Girl, Not Yet a Woman". National World have purchased a copy of the book and will bring you all the biggest revelations.

The Woman In Me charts Britney's life and career and is a bid for the star to take back control of her own story. Snippets and leaks from the book have whipped anticipation for the book into a fever pitch.

In the first chapter of the memoir, Spears describes how tragedy "runs in my family" and reveals that her middle name - Jean - comes from her paternal grandmother. Britney dives into the painful story of her father's mother who suffered significant abuse at the hand of her husband - June Spears Sr.

Britney writes: "Jean suffered the loss of a baby when he was only three days old. June sent Jean to Southeast Louisiana Hospital, a by-all-accounts horrible asylum in Mandeville, where she was put on lithium.

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"In 1966, when she was thirty one, my grandmother Jean shot herself with a shotgun on her infant son's grave, just over eight years after his death. I can't imagine the grief she must have felt."

Spears also recalls the bittersweet tale of her maternal grandmother - Lilian "Lily" Portell - who grew up in London but moved to Louisiana after meeting an American soldier - Barney Bridges - during World War II. Upon arriving in her new home with her husband, Lily is said to have asked "where are all the lights?"

After her move to the United States, Spears' grandmother Lily never returned to London. Britney writes: "My family said that Barney didn't want to let Lily go back to London because he thought that if she went, she wouldn't come home."

On a more positive note, Spears recalls idiolising Lily when she grew up and "loved copying her British accent". Britney adds that she wanted to have "manners and a lilting voice just like hers".

National World will bring you more coverage from the launch of Britney Spears The Woman In Me.

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