Mormon Times Deseret News

This post is brought to you by Deseret News. View the original post here.

UNDERCOVER TARGET,” by Frank Holdaway, Covenant Communications, $16.99, 257 pages (f)

Not often do the worlds of secret agents and church-going families collide, but that is exactly the situation in Frank Holdaway’s newest novel titled “Undercover Target.”

A follow-up to his first book, “Undercover Saint,” this latest work delves into the lives of Matt and Hope Knight, and brings them face to face with dangers they believed were behind them.

Unable to have children, Matt and Hope seek to adopt a child from China, but events at the orphanage do not go as planned. Following a troubling encounter, the couple brings three children home with them, not just the one they had planned.

Years later, Matt, a former undercover agent, and his adopted son Peng are struggling. Peng is sullen and withdrawn, rarely engaging with the family. His late-night escapes to the city streets are even more concerning. When Matt and Peng leave home for a hiking trip with the ward Scout group, Matt is unsure their relationship can be salvaged.

The campout turns out to be more than they planned on as an unknown band of mercenaries accosts the Scouts and takes them hostage while Matt is away. At the same time, an enemy from Matt’s past kidnaps Hope and her daughter. Plans to abduct Matt’s family and then turn them over to a wealthy buyer with malicious intentions lead Matt to lean on his closest friends to save the people he loves most.

This story charges straight into thrills and keeps the drama flowing throughout. While the plot does get a bit messy near the end, the bulk of the book is engaging and exhilarating. The characters are dynamic and compelling, leading readers to care about their welfare.

Many of the characters in the book are members of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, and they rely heavily on prayer and the guidance of the Holy Ghost to help them maneuver the troubles they encounter.

While the book is free of profanity or explicit sexual content, and there are vague hints that some characters have participated in the rape and torture of women.

Melissa DeMoux is a stay-at-home mother of six children and lives in West Jordan, Utah. Her email is, and she blogs about her adventures in motherhood at

Recently Posted

Maxwell Institute

MIPodcast #75—“To be learned is good,” with Richard Bushman

Our 75th Episode! The Book of Mormon warns against mistaking intelligence for wisdom, but adds a crucial caveat: “to be learned is good if they hearken unto the counsels of God” (2 Nephi 9:29). Where LDS founding prophet Joseph ...

Inspirational Messages

Has the Day of Miracles Ceased?

"A critical question to ponder is “Where do we place our faith?” Is our faith focused on simply wanting to be relieved of pain and suffering, or is it firmly centered ...

Inspirational Messages

The Doctrine of Christ: Our Daily Walk

"As we come to know God, we begin to really know ourselves and our potential. These two things cannot be separated. Joseph Smith taught, “If men do not comprehend the character ...

Inspirational Messages

Becoming a True Disciple

"Discipleship is all about doing and becoming. As we obey His commandments and serve our fellowmen, we become better disciples of Jesus Christ. Obedience and submission to His will bring the ...

Inspirational Messages

Three Sisters

"You are in His hands. Very good hands. Loving hands. Caring hands. And nothing anyone ever says about you can change that. Their words are meaningless compared to what God has ...

Inspirational Messages

The Eternal Family

"An eternal bond doesn’t just happen as a result of sealing covenants we make in the temple. How we conduct ourselves in this life will determine what we will be in ...