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London, where I live and work (well, usually…)

It’s a unique and endlessly exciting place, regardless whether you have lived there your entire life or just pay a short, one-time visit.


My children, who have pieces of Sara in them, or, maybe, the other way around

The File Cover.jpg

Gary Born is a preeminent international lawyer and author. He has represented countries and businesses in nearly 1,000 international disputes around the world, including cases involving Sudan, Eritrea, Ethiopia and Yemen; he is ranked by clients, competitors and colleagues as the leading international dispute resolution lawyer in the world. Born has also published widely on international law, including having written leading commentaries on international arbitration and cross-border litigation. His books on international law have been cited and relied upon, more than anyone else in his field, by the Supreme Courts or their equivalents in the United States, Canada, United Kingdom, Australia, India, New Zealand, Singapore and elsewhere. He has also taught for the past 30 years at universities in the Americas, Europe, Asia and Africa, including Harvard Law School, National University of Singapore and St. Gallen University. He lives in London,with two unbelievably affectionate and loyal Maine Coons, and travels widely.  The File is his first novel.

Long walks or hikes, ideally in places without people. 

One of my particular favorites is the GR20 in Corsica, which crosses the island from north to south, on trails that you can hike on all day and never see anyone else. Or the Grand Canyon, where the first 30 minutes are crowded, but then, 1,000 feet or so down into the canyon, the trails empty out and you are left with nothing but the rock walls and desert plants. 

Debut thriller author Gary Born’s top things in life

Italy, including its food, its wine, its people and its scenery. 

The pristine beaches in the south are where Sara and Jeb landed in my debut thriller, The File; then they rode north along the coastline, passing through Rome, with its eternal skyline, before stopping to eat in a road-side pizzeria, where the pizza could have had three Michelin stars; and then riding further north, to Lucca, on the western coast near Pisa, with the hotel where Sara and Jeb stayed looking over the canal and market; ending up in the north, on the border with Switzerland, the Alps in the background, behind a mountain lake that could not be more different from Calabria in the south.

Central Africa, with its endless variety and change and incredible people. 

The plains of East Africa, with the Masai and their cattle, are particular favorites. But the towns and crowded cities of Kenya, Congo, Rwanda and elsewhere are another, modern face of an incredible region, full of life and excitement in very different ways.

Rwenzori Mountains

The Mountains of the Moon, where the Nile River rises, with impossibly impenetrable jungles and insanely steep mountains and trails. These are the mountains where Sara discovers the wreckage of the Nazi bomber, and its file of documents. They range from low-lying jungle and swampland, almost tropical, to high elevations and snow-covered peaks. The mountains are almost uninhabited, with only hunters on the trails — where Sara fled from the Russians and then decided to turn the tables on her pursuers.


Sahara Desert, and its harsh beauty. 

There is something unforgettable about the emptiness of the desert — unbearably hot in the day, then freezing cold at night. At first, the rocks and dunes seem lifeless and dead, but then you notice the plants, adapted to the climate, the insects and reptiles, and, if you are lucky, the foxes and other creatures that live there.


Courage, like what Sara demonstrates throughout The File. 

Almost every great book or play is about either courage or lack of courage. The endless resilience of human beings, braving either the elements or man’s cruelties and oppression, is something that inspires almost everyone, in one way or another.


Secrets, but I won’t say why…

International law

What I do in my day job, and, more importantly, what is needed more than ever today. Whether helping to defeat dictators in Ukraine or to stand up to oppression in Iran and elsewhere, the rule of law is critical to people all around the world. It is what distinguishes tyrants and warmongers from ordinary people who just want to live their lives in peace.


London, where I live and work (well, usually…)

It’s a unique and endlessly exciting place, regardless whether you have lived there your entire life or just pay a short, one-time visit.


Switzerland (Zurich and elsewhere)

Who can’t love the Swiss mountains, lakes and countryside?  And it’s impossible to argue with the surveys that vote Zurich the most livable city in the world.  


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