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Million to One    by Darlene Gardner order for
Million to One
by Darlene Gardner
Order:  USA  Can
Harlequin, 2005 (2005)
* *   Reviewed by Marie Hashima Lofton

Kaylee Carter sees a lottery winner being interviewed on television. The woman is in her 40s and from McIntosh, Ohio. Kaylee, who grew up in Houston, knows that her family originally lived in Ohio. For years Kaylee (who was treated much more harshly by her parents than her younger sister Lilly) has believed she was adopted. So, when Sofia Donatelli announces the existence of a long lost daughter named Constanzia, Kaylee freaks out, because that is her middle name.

Kaylee travels to Ohio with her six-year old son Joey (Joe Joe), since she has nothing to stay for in Florida. Kaylee had run away to Florida before graduating from high school, and subsequently became pregnant by Rusty who had been in and out of prison - a man she never wants to see again. Rusty is about to be released, and Kaylee feels she has nothing to lose by traveling to Ohio to meet Sofia Donatelli. Kaylee doesn't seek the woman out immediately, but goes on a job hunt. At the restaurant where she hopes to get hired (Nunzio's), she bumps into Tony, not knowing he is Sofia's stepson. Very protective of his stepmother, Tony thinks that Kaylee is yet another money hungry stranger pretending to be Sofia's long lost daughter.

Million to One is a wonderful romance with a great dual plot - about finding one's true identity and setting down roots, and also finding a man to love and trust. Kaylee, who never felt at home with her parents in Texas, finds a surrogate mother in Sofia, as well as the potential of true love with Tony. And her son Joey has never been happier. The big mystery of course - whether Kaylee is truly Sofia's long lost daughter - draws in the reader.

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