Set on Christmas eve in Santa Fe, N.Mex., this action-packed novel from bestseller Morrell (Creepers) may not achieve holiday classic status, but it does feature an appealing hero. Wounded and on the run, undercover agent Paul Kagan shelters beneath his jacket a five-week-old infant. Russian mobsters are after the baby, the son of a charismatic Palestinian, Ahmed Hassan, who preaches peace in the Middle East. Those who make their money off that struggle wish to silence Hassan by holding the baby hostage. Paul makes his stand in a house where Meredith and her crippled son, Cole, await the return of his abusive, alcoholic father, Ted. While setting interesting traps to foil his attackers, Paul tells a spymaster’s version of the tale of the magi. This slim volume will make the perfect stocking-stuffer for deserving thriller readers.