“A taut globe-trotting thriller .. told with eloquence and ruthless efficiency.”
– George Nolfi, screenwriter, “The Bourne Ultimatum”
LONDON – Debut author Gary Born erupts into the literary scene with a nail-biting thriller centered on international espionage in “The File” (Histria Books, March 28, 2023). Leaning into his experience as a preeminent international lawyer, Born weaves an exciting tale that spans Africa, the Middle East and Europe in a relentless pursuit of WWII Nazi intel that will enthrall the reader from the first page.
Enter Sara West, a tenacious botany graduate student on a scientific expedition in the heart of the African jungle. During her research, she stumbles upon a cache of WWII Nazi files in the wreck of a German bomber hidden deep within the jungle. Those hidden files reveal the location of a multibillion-dollar war chest, secretly deposited by the Nazis in numbered Swiss bank accounts at the end of WWII.
But Sara isn’t the only one interested in the war chest. Former KGB agent Ivan Petronov and Franklin Kerrington III, deputy director of the CIA, both have deeply personal reasons for acquiring the files Sara has found.
With two dangerous men — and their teams of hit men — on her trail, will Sara be able to escape the jungle alive?
Gary Born | March 28, 2023 | Histria Books | Spy Thriller
Hardcover | 9781592112050 | $29.99
About the Author
Gary Born is widely regarded as the world’s preeminent authority on international commercial arbitration and international litigation. He has been ranked for more than 20 years as one of the world’s leading international arbitration advocates and authors. “The File” is his debut novel.
Connect with Gary Born on LinkedIn
In an interview, Gary Born can discuss:
- His background in international law and how his experiences in the industry inspired the book’s premise
- Why he decided to set the book primarily in the African jungle
- His experience travelling and working around the world and the research he conducted to accurately write the novel’s setting
- Why the relationship between heroine Sara and Jeb is crucial to the story’s narrative
- What makes the main character Sara intriguing and what he hopes she exemplifies to readers
- Future projects he’s working on
Praise for Gary Born and “The File”
“A thoroughly enjoyable, engrossing thriller with a captivating young, beautiful American botanist at the center of the fast paced action. Rooting for Sara West as she evades a Russian assassination team through the dense jungles of central Africa – her expedition experience and wits her only weapons in a race to safety – will keep you up past your bedtime. Can Sara trust CIA operative Jeb Fisher or will the likable, attractive American also betray her trust? This well written adventure will take Sara from the rainforests of central Africa to the shores of north Africa and on to the cobbled streets of Europe as she struggles to identify friend from foe. Is it all a trap? The suspense will keep you guessing and eagerly awaiting a sequel…..” – Gina Haspel, former Director of the Central Intelligence Agency
“I loved ‘The File,’ a debut thriller that’s so good it’s impossible to believe it’s Gary Born’s first. An international lawyer par excellence, he writes with an insider’s expertise that shows on every page of this lightning-fast read, which races through the Rwenzori Mountains, the halls of the CIA, and the banks of Zurich with aplomb and authenticity. The novel opens when botanist Sara West finds a secret file in a plane that crashed in the Congolese jungle, and the action never lets up, twisting and turning its way around the world. West is one of the strongest and smartest heroines I’ve read in recent years, and I cheered for her every step of the way. Welcome, Gary Born!” — Lisa Scottoline, No. 1 bestselling author
“A taut globe-trotting thriller, as American and Russian intelligence operatives race to hunt down the discoverer of a long-buried secret, told with eloquence and ruthless efficiency.” – George Nolfi, screenwriter, “The Bourne Ultimatum”
“ ‘The File’ is everything you want in a globetrotting, Nazi-hunting, desert-traversing survival epic and pressure cooker spycraft thriller!” – Joshuah Bearman, author, Wired
An interview with Gary Born
How did having a background in international law shape the planning and execution of this novel?
One of the central themes of the novel involves secret Swiss bank accounts, holding Nazi deposits from World War II. My practice in international law has involved both Swiss bank accounts and WWII assets, which provided vital background for this aspect of the thriller.
You tackle a lot of settings throughout the book, how do you do research to write about different settings and countries? Do you pull from your own personal travel experiences?
I have travelled almost everywhere in the world, for both work and pleasure. I drew on hikes in Uganda and Congo, on road trips in the Sahara, travels in Italy and many weeks in Zurich for the settings in the book. It is never easy to capture the heart and soul of a place in a few sentences, but these travels helped me along the way.
Sara is a 28 year old graduate student, why did you decide to write a main character with significantly different life experiences then your own?
Sara’s experience isn’t that different from mine, in some important ways. I spent time in the Ruwenzori mountains — without killers on my trail, to be sure — when I was Sara’s age. And I have a daughter who is also from Sara’s generation. I think the character has some of both my daughter and myself in her.
Did you conduct any kind of research to help write the book?
I spent time researching Nazi warplanes and Tempelhof; walked the streets of Zurich, imagining chase scenes; spent a few days in Lucca and the surrounding area, developing Jeb and Sara’s time there. I also researched what FSS and FSB operatives would and wouldn’t have been good at — thoughts that I passed along to Sara for her use.
What do you hope the readers take away from your book?
Many things, but especially Sara’s determination and resilience, even when nothing seemed possible. Her objectivity and resourcefulness. The complexity of Sara and Jeb’s relationship, as it unfolds. Sara’s reactions to her father’s death and fiance’s betrayal. The different forms of malice and evil that Petronov and Kerrington personified, and Sara’s responses to that.
What projects are you working on next?
Another thriller — “The Priest” — a former Mafia enforcer is posted abroad after giving up his life of mayhem and becoming a priest; by chance, he befriends a former high-ranking general, whose deathbed confession and will sends the priest in search of documents that would reshape the map of Asia, while chased by intelligence services intent on stopping the priest in his tracks
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