The party appears to be over for Pippa Middleton after the price of her celebrations book was slashed to just £6.25 in a bid to shift more copies before Christmas.
WHSmith has slashed 75 per cent from the cover price of ‘Celebrate: A Year of Festivities for Families and Friends’ which originally went on sale for £25.
The book has been ridiculed by critics and is currently languishing at 353 in online retailer Amazon’s bestselling chart.
She was reportedly paid a £400,000 advance for the book but sales have failed to live up to expectations, with just 2,000 shifted in the first week.
Veteran novelist Jilly Cooper, author of a string of raunchy bestsellers, recently described the book as “terrible” and claimed bosses at Penguin were “slitting their wrists”.
She said: “It’s terrible isn’t it? The sales have been dreadful, and I hear that the people at Penguin are virtually slitting their wrists over it.
“To think of all the money they spent on it, too.
“Her first one wasn’t a good idea. I don’t blame her – I think that she was ill-advised.”
Pippa’s party book is a comprehensive guide to year-round festivities but critics say her tips are too simplistic and condescending.
Her time-saving trick for having ice at a party is “buy in bulk for delivery from wine shops, or make batches of your own and store in freezer bags”.
Pippa’s top tip for Christmas day is: “Because of their size, turkeys are perfect for feeding large gatherings.”
To share a perfect Valentine’s Day meal at home with your partner, Pippa advises “set the table somewhere you don’t normally dine. A small table for two can be laid pretty much anywhere around your home.”
The book was even the butt of jokes by TV host Lorraine Kelly as she presented the Specsavers National Book Awards in Knightsbridge, London.
She said: “To make sure we got this just right today we consulted the book Celebrate by Pippa Middleton.
“I found this advice: ‘To host the perfect book awards, read lots of books, choose the best ones, and make sure there is plenty of wine on the tables’.”
The book even has a parody Twitter account called ‘@PippaTips’ which sends obvious tips to 30,000 followers.
These include “Many ready meals aren’t quite ready to eat, you’ll often need to pop them in a microwave or oven first” and “A great way to entertain friends, loved ones and other people is to tell a joke or recite an amusing story.”
Party planner Pippa works for her parents’ company Party Pieces, which has been accused of cashing in on their royal connections.
Speaking before the launch of Celebrate, Pippa said: “This book is designed to be a comprehensive guide to home entertaining, based on my experience in my family’s party business, Party Pieces, and work for London-based events company, Table Talk.
“It is a useful and practical journey into British-themed occasions and I hope it offers welcome inspiration and ideas, most of which needn’t leave you alarmingly out of pocket.”
Today the book was on sale on the WHSmith website for £10.99, but it appeared in-store for just £6.25.
A spokesperson for WHSmith said: “We have got an up to 75 per cent-off promotion at the moment, and it is just one of the many hardback books that are part of that offer.”