December 26th through December 30th – 60+ Authors, 60+ Books, All 99 Cents!

99 Kindle Sale 2013

Click here for a complete listing of all the 99¢ books.  These prices are available on Amazon only.

*****

Included with these fabulous authors and titles is my YA mystery, Football Sweetheart!

FootballSweetheart_Digital

High School Football can be MURDER…

Aimee Freeman is looking forward to the start of her senior year. She knows her best friend Ella has been keeping secrets from her all summer long, but with football season right around the corner, the student trainer decides not to worry about it-they’ll have plenty of time to catch up on the field.

Then Ella goes missing, and Aimee realizes those secrets might be the key to finding her. As the case unfolds, Aimee discovers more than one person may have wanted to harm Ella. Was it Ella’s current boyfriend, a social outcast the entire city seems intent on blaming for her disappearance? Or her ex-boyfriend, the beloved star quarterback who has harassed Ella since their breakup? The list of potential suspects continues to grow after Aimee reads Ella’s journal, but she must break her best friend’s secret code to reveal their identities.

Unbeknownst to Aimee, her investigation has not gone unnoticed. Ella’s abductor is watching and waiting. Will he decide Aimee needs to be silenced-making her the next target?

*****

Readers agree that Football Sweetheart is hard to put down and perfect reading for adults and teens alike!  Take advantage of this weekend’s sale spectacular and buy a copy for under a dollar!

PS. Football Sweetheart is only 99¢ for the Nook too!

*****

Tiffany A. White is the author of the YA mystery Football Sweetheart series available onKindle and Nook.  She is available for contact via TwitterFacebookGoogle+, or via email at tiffany {at} tiffanyawhite {dot} com.

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Great Winter Recipe – Thai Spicy Coconut Soup

My guy loves Thai food.  Loves.  To be honest, I don’t actually think I ever had Thai food until we started dating… and now I’m a big fan too!  However, eating out every time one of us wants Thai food can get very expensive, so I figured I better learn a few recipes I could make at home.  Enter Pinterest…

I’ve already tried a Tom Kha soup recipe, and it was good, but one can never have too many variations to try until they find the one their family loves.  So when we were iced in a few weeks ago, I tried a new one—Thai Spicy Coconut Soup.

Spicy Coconut SoupThe ingredients were almost exactly like the Tom Kha recipe we’ve tried before, with the exception of a few things that we will add next time around.  But I’ll get to that more in a bit.

First, what’s needed:

2 tablespoons of olive oil
1 ½ cups of mushrooms (we like to use straw mushrooms)
Diced red bell pepper (we used green because the store didn’t have red)
1 inch peeled and minced ginger
4 cloves of minced garlic
Half a stalk of lemongrass (we like to use the Gourmet Garden lemongrass paste)
2 teaspoons of red curry paste
3 cups of chicken broth
1 can of coconut milk
1 tablespoon of sugar
3 tablespoons of soy sauce
1 – 1 ½ cups of cooked chicken, cubed or shredded
Sliced green onion (we like a lot…)
A handful of cherry tomatoes
Cilantro
Rice or Ramen noodles

Now let’s cook:

Heat the oil in a pan over medium heat.

Add the garlic, ginger, lemongrass, mushrooms, and bell pepper.  Cook for 3 minutes.

Add the curry and cook another minute.

Transfer to a stock pot and add the coconut milk, chicken broth, sugar, and soy sauce.  Bring to a boil, reduce heat, and simmer 10 minutes.

Meanwhile, boil the chicken in a separate pot and add once the base is ready.

Finally, add the green onion and tomatoes.  Heat through and serve.

Best served with rice or noodles (we like to use Ramen noodles) and fresh cilantro…

Now, as with any dish you prepare, it is important to taste test before serving.  Especially with Thai soup.  The end product may not be spicy enough, not salty enough, not sweet enough, or the other ends of these spectrums.

For us, this soup base was not any of the above.  So we added another can of coconut milk, chopped dried chili pepper, more sugar, and more soy.  Even then, we decided the soy just wasn’t right and next time we’d try with fish sauce.

And basil.  For whatever reason, the recipe did not call for basil and we both agreed basil would add a ton of necessary flavor to this dish.

But don’t get me wrong, this soup was yummy.  We enjoyed it for three nights until it was all gone.  The dish proved perfect for a cold winter night.

And the Thai food lover approved.

Are you a Thai soup fan?  Have any Thai recipes to share?  I’d love to hear from you!

Original Pinterest recipe found on this site:

http://joansfoodwanderings.blogspot.com/2013/10/spicy-thai-coconut-soup.html

*****

Tiffany A. White is the author of the YA mystery Football Sweetheart series available on Kindle and Nook.  She is available for contact via Twitter, Facebook, Google+, or via email at tiffany {at} tiffanyawhite {dot} com.

My Favorite Holiday Movies

The holiday season means something different to every person who observes it.  For some, the most important aspect of this time of year is the precious time spent with friends and family.  Others enjoy giving…  by dedicating their time to special organizations, by baking sweet treats for those nearest and dearest to them, and by wrapping purchased gifts with red and green papers and ribbons.

For me, it’s all about tradition—baking my mom’s special recipe walnut muffins, enjoying a glass (or two or three) of “adult” eggnog while wrapping presents, listening to Harry Connick, Jr. and Andrea Bocelli belt out traditional holiday music as I drive around town looking for last-minute gifts, and carefully placing the Baby Jesus in the manger of our nativity set at midnight on Christmas Eve.

My list wouldn’t be complete without adding another of my holiday traditions… watching a few of my favorite holiday movies one more time.  I’ve watched these films for as long as I can remember.  I may not catch each one every single year, but that doesn’t mean I don’t try.

So, which movies do I want to see every December?

First, there’s the classic and light-hearted…

Miracle on 34th Street (1947)

Home Alone

The Santa Clause (and 2 and 3)

Elf

The Holiday

Die Hard

 By now, everyone that reads this blog knows that I love my scary movies… and while these flicks might not seem as scary to me today as they did when I watched them for the very first time, they still fall into this holiday category…

Gremlins

Black Christmas (2006)

Next, there are a few “darker” comedies…

Scrooged

Bad Santa

And probably my favorite of all time…

National Lampoon’s Christmas Vacation

It doesn’t matter how old I am, how many times I’ve watched these movies, or how old a few of these actually are, they will always be considered classics and must-sees in my house!

Do you have any special holiday movies that you watch every year?  I’d love to hear from you!

*****

Tiffany A. White is the author of the YA mystery Football Sweetheart series available on Kindle and Nook.  She is available for contact via Twitter, Facebook, Google+, or via email at tiffany {at} tiffanyawhite {dot} com.

Why It’s Worth a Watch Wednesday – The Following

With 2013 coming to an end, and the new winter television schedule right around the corner, I have decided to take a break (of sorts) here on Why It’s Worth a Watch Wednesday.  I say “of sorts” because instead of reviewing a fresh new series, I want to feature a show that I am looking forward to returning in the 2014 TV season.

And one that I am most excited about?  The Following

In The Following, former FBI agent Ryan Hardy (Kevin Bacon, um… from Footloose) must track down serial killer Joe Carroll (James Purefoy from Rome)—again.

There’s only one problem; like most serial killers, Carroll has fans now… people who are willing to do anything to help him succeed.

It takes very little to pique my interest when a new pilot premieres on television; I’ll watch pretty much anything.  But there are a few things that instantly attract me to a new show: the concept, the actors and actresses, and the attention to detail, particularly the music.  The Following had me at “hello” if that’s even possible for a TV program.

Agent Hardy is damaged… but no one knows Carroll as well as he does.

First, the serial drama follows the “cat and mouse” game between Carroll and Hardy.  The idea of a former FBI agent with issues working to track down a demented killer he once captured is right up my alley.  Next, the series stars, as already mentioned, Hollywood great Kevin Bacon.  I can’t even remember the last time Mr. Bacon starred in a TV series, if he ever has, which tells me the storyline really captured his attention as well.  And third, the pilot episode began with Marilyn Manson’s rendition of “Sweet Dreams.”  The musical introduction of this song grabs me every time… and the lyrics fit perfectly with the Carroll/Hardy scene at the end of the pilot.

So, is The Following worth following?

For me, the answer is an astounding yes!  Although I usually prefer mysteries and whodunits, the premise of not only the “cat and mouse” game between Carroll and Hardy, but also the concept that Carroll’s crazies, or followers, who will do absolutely anything and everything to convey Carroll’s messages, is quite unique to television—and frightening, considering there are people in our world who worship some of the worst criminals for all the wrong reasons.

Carroll even looks crazy…

Viewers are immediately taken into the mind and history of the two main characters.  The protagonist, Hardy, is now a retired FBI agent, who is also a recovering alcoholic and a man fighting to stay healthy (he has a bad heart).  And the antagonist, Carroll, who’s not only a murderer, worked previously as a literature professor obsessed with Edgar Allan Poe.

“Carroll was obsessed with the Romantic Period… in particular, his hero, Edgar Allan Poe.  And like Poe, he believed in the insanity of art, that it had to be felt.  He didn’t just eviscerate fourteen female students, he was making art.  He cut out his victims’ eyes as a nod to his favorite works of Poe: ‘The Tell-Tale Heart’ and ‘The Black Cat.’ See, Poe believed the eyes are our identity, windows to our soul.  To classify him (Carroll) as a picarist would be too simplistic.” ~ Hardy about Carroll to a group of FBI agents

As the pilot begins, we learn immediately that Carroll has escaped from prison and Hardy was responsible for locking him away.  But how did Hardy catch Carroll in the first place?  The Following uses a series of flashbacks to tell the backstory of these two characters.  And probably the most fascinating flashback shows us that Hardy used Carroll’s wife (Claire, played  by Natalie Zea from Justified and Californication), who also happens to be a professor, as an expert during his investigation.  Hardy had visited her on multiple occasions for help in tracking down the killer and she unknowingly led him in the direction of her own husband.  Clearly, this gives Carroll reason to haunt and torture both Hardy and Claire… and I’m sure the fact that the two shared a romantic connection doesn’t help either.

The agents react to one of the gruesome scenes left behind by one of Carroll’s followers…

The Following’s supporting cast is filled with familiar faces: Maggie Grace (the Taken movies) as Sarah, one of Carroll’s survivors; Shawn Ashmore (the X-Men movies) as FBI agent Weston; Jeananne Goossen (Alcatraz) as FBI agent Mason; and Warren Cole (Common Law) as Roderick.

I must confess, I thought the actor playing agent Weston was also the actor who plays Jinks on Warehouse 13, but it turns out it’s not—they are twin brothers!  Just a tad bit of trivia…

Oh, and if it’s even possible to fall in love with a bad guy, Roderick is that man.  But I digress…

Watching The Following is similar to enjoying a major motion picture thriller.  It’s intense, suspenseful, somewhat dark, and it keeps viewers on the edge of their seats with an occasional reason to jump out of their skin.  Toss in the Edgar Allan Poe references, who might just be my favorite poet, and I can’t help but award the Fox serial drama with the GTV rating.  Fox has themselves a groundbreaking television series, appropriate for viewing after dark with a perfectly grilled bone-in filet, steamed broccoli, and a glass of fine red wine.

ust one of the many Edgar Allan Poe references… and yes, that’s written in blood.

And just when you think the story has wrapped up, as implied during the season one finale, they leave us with just a little taste of more to come…  I can’t wait to see what The Following has in store for us in the new season!  And with almost an entirely new cast, including Connie Nielsen (Gladiator and Basic), James McDaniel (NYPD Blue), Jessica Stroup (the newer version of 90210), and Keith Carradine (Dexter and Damages)!

The Following returns in a two night event this January (Sunday the 19th and Monday the 20th).  Why we’ve had to wait so long is beyond me.  But I’ve waited this long and I can wait a few more weeks…

Oh, and I just thought the Edgar Allan Poe masks were creepy in season one.  The Joe Carroll masks in the season two commercials are even worse!

What do you think?  Have you watched The Following?  I’d love to hear from you! 

A Recap of The WatchWed Review System:

GTV (Gourmet TV): Everything we want and more
MacTV (MacNCheese TV): Guilty pleasure. Not perfect, but is satisfies
GMacTV (Gourmet MacNCheese TV): A combination of fine wine and comfort food
JFTV (Junk food TV):It’s not great for us, but we’ll go back for seconds
TBPTV (Twice Baked Potato TV): Part gourmet and delicious, while absolutely horrible for our cholesterol
SSTV (Still Simmering TV): It has potential, but the jury is still out
NIV (NyQuil Induced Viewing): Perfect for that late night television sleep timer
LOTV (Liver&Onions TV): Do we really have to explain? Blech
Inedible TV: Exactly how it sounds…

*****

Tiffany A. White is the author of the YA mystery Football Sweetheart series available on Kindle and Nook.  She is available for contact via Twitter, Facebook, Google+, or via email at tiffany {at} tiffanyawhite {dot} com.

Original Vs. Remake – The Fog (2005)

It’s time again for Catie Rhodes and me to break down another cinematic original and its remake.  Returning to our usual ways, Catie reviews the original and I take on the remake.  This month we tackle the horror film, The Fog.

The FogUsually, I include Catie’s Homemade Summary that applies to both films.  But this time, I tweaked it just a bit:

A small Oregon island prepares to celebrate its founding fathers only to find a supernatural force wants to mark the celebration in a less festive—and more deadly—manner.

Fog… fog is a lot like darkness.  The restriction of one’s visibility and inability to see clearly is a bit spooky.  Anyone who has ever driven in a thick fog knows exactly what I’m talking about—it’s stressful not knowing what is directly in front of you.  And perhaps it’s because of this that fog is now associated more times than not with horror—images, movies, etc.  Although I haven’t had the reveal yet, I even use fog on the cover of my second YA release to add to the allure and mystery of the story.

But let’s talk about the 2005 remake, starring Tom Welling (Smallville), Maggie Grace (the Taken films), and Selma Blair (from one of my favorites, Cruel Intentions).  Tom Welling plays Nick Castle, the hero of the story.  When I first heard of this film back in 2005, not only was I intrigued by the title and concept (because I love horror), but I’d watch this Superman in pretty much anything.

Anyway, here’s an interesting bit of trivia: the character of Nick Castle is named after the actor who played “The Shape” in Carpenter’s Halloween.  Remember, Carpenter created the original 1980 film.

So I rented the 2005 movie one Friday night…

Years ago.  Back when it first hit the video stores.  And then, I felt The Fog was a pretty good flick, especially when watched in the dark.  And by the way, the sink scene (you’ll know what I’m talking about) got me…

But did it scare the bejeezus out of me?  No.

And this time when I watched it specifically for this review?  Nope.  Not this time either.  To be honest, I had hard time keeping interest this go round.

However, let me be clear.  I did not have a hard time watching because it’s horrible, or deserving of some of the “bad movie” awards it won (the Fangoria Chainsaw Awards for Worst Film and the Stinkers Bad Movie Award for Least Scary Horror Movie), but because I had already seen it and nothing really surprised me this time.

After all, that is what I look for in a horror movie… does it keep me on the edge of my seat?  Does it surprise me?  Is it intense?  Because let’s be honest, I’ve come to the conclusion that no movie actually scares me.  I just watched The Conjuring this week after hearing so many things about how it’s the scariest movie people have seen in ages.  Yet, I didn’t find it scary one single bit.  Intense.  Yes.  But scary?  No.

So is the 2005 film version worthy of a watch?  Why not?  If you haven’t already seen it that is…

However, I can’t compare it to the original.  And that’s one reason why I love this series so much.  Often times, I don’t even realize the more recent films are even remakes, like this month.  Not only was I not aware of the 1980 film, I had no idea it was a John Carpenter flick.  Bottom line, I will now have to watch the original just because.

What do you think?  Have you seen either the original or the 2005 version of The Fog?  If you’ve seen both, which do you prefer and why?  If you haven’t, do you want to?  I’d love to hear from you! 

*****

Tiffany A. White is the author of the YA mystery Football Sweetheart series available on Kindle and Nook.  She is available for contact via Twitter, Facebook, Google+, or via email at tiffany {at} tiffanyawhite {dot} com.

Why It’s Worth a Watch Wednesday – The Tomorrow People

Welcome back to Why It’s Worth a Watch Wednesday!

Today I’m jumping in with one the CW’s new shows this season—The Tomorrow People.

The CW Summary: Taking a chance and listening to the persistent voice in his head, Stephen Jameson ends up meeting a group of genetically advanced people with supernatural abilities, and not only learns about himself, but the truth behind his father’s disappearance. 

Based on the British series of the same name, The Tomorrow People follows a group of kids who have evolved into the supernatural with special abilities.  And while these select few were born with their special powers, it takes some time for the realization of these unique abilities to evolve.  Take teenager Stephen Jameson for example…

Stephen (played by Robbie Amell, “Fred” from the Scooby-Doo! TV movies) was just a normal teenage boy by all accounts until he starts hearing voices and waking up in strange places.  He thinks he is going crazy like his dad, who disappeared when he was just eight, but it turns out he is not crazy.  He has latent powers starting to emerge—telepathy, telekinesis, and teleportation (the Three Ts).  After fighting it as long as he can, Stephen gives in and decides to listen to one of the voices in his head… and this voice leads him to The Tomorrow People, a genetically advanced group (John, Cara, and Russell) with powers very similar to his.

The Tomorrow People all share the same or similar genetic mutations that awaken during the adolescent years.  They are not superheroes; they are a hunted species trying to survive.  But in order for them to survive, they must outsmart the group hunting them—a group of scientists called Ultra (led by Stephen’s uncle—Jedikiah).

As one would expect, the government wants The Tomorrow People neutralized, so they set up Ultra to contain them.  Ultra uses captured Tomorrow People as agents to hunt the others down.  There’s just one catch—Tomorrow People can’t kill anyone.  An organic high frequency squeal that only they can hear interacts with their powers, causing them to have killer headaches when they come close to killing.  But that doesn’t stop Ultra from capturing and killing them.

The new supernatural drama also stars: Luke Mitchell (the cute Australian actor from Neighbours) as John; Peyton List (Mad Men and FlashForward) as Cara; Aaron Yoo (Disturbia and the remake of Friday the 13th) as Russell; and Mark Pellegrino (Supernatural, the US version of Being Human, Dexter, and The Closer) as Jedikiah.

The Tomorrow People is one of the rare television shows that interested both my guy and me from the very first time we saw the trailer.  He was on board because it looked supernaturalish… and it is.  Actually, the effects are pretty darn good for TV.  And I was on board because of the pretty people.  Hey, what can I say?

Actually, one of the first things that intrigued me was the lead actor’s name—Robbie Amell.  Amell.  Sound familiar?  It should… Stephen Amell is the star of the hit CW series Arrow.  And I love me some Stephen Amell.

Anyway, the name is not a coincidence.  The two men are cousins.  But enough about that…

Now well into the season, I’m awarding The Tomorrow People with the JFTV rating.  It’s not my favorite CW program, but I do enjoy it and I will keep going back for more as time permits (I am a bit behind and need to catch up).

What do you think—do you watch The Tomorrow People?  I’d love to hear from you!

A Recap of The WatchWed Review System:

GTV (Gourmet TV): Everything we want and more
MacTV (MacNCheese TV): Guilty pleasure. Not perfect, but is satisfies
GMacTV (Gourmet MacNCheese TV): A combination of fine wine and comfort food
JFTV (Junk food TV):It’s not great for us, but we’ll go back for seconds
TBPTV (Twice Baked Potato TV): Part gourmet and delicious, while absolutely horrible for our cholesterol
SSTV (Still Simmering TV): It has potential, but the jury is still out
NIV (NyQuil Induced Viewing): Perfect for that late night television sleep timer
LOTV (Liver&Onions TV): Do we really have to explain? Blech
Inedible TV: Exactly how it sounds…

*****

Tiffany A. White is the author of the YA mystery Football Sweetheart series available on Kindle and Nook.  She is available for contact via Twitter, Facebook, Google+, or via email at tiffany {at} tiffanyawhite {dot} com.

Ellen and the Twelve Days of Giveaways

I talk a lot of television here on The Ooo Factor, mainly because I watch a lot of TV… but I’ve never really mentioned any of the daytime programs that I enjoy.  For longer than I can remember, I’ve watched Live with Regis and Kelly (which is now Live with Kelly and Michael).  For at least the past decade or so, I have also caught The View on occasion.  And dating back to when I was a little, little girl, I’ve stayed up-to-date with a few of my favorite soap operas, mainly General Hospital.

But only recently have I started watching The Ellen DeGeneres Show.  It’s not that I didn’t watch previously because I didn’t like Ellen DeGeneres, it’s because I worked an 8-5 job and felt I already recorded enough talk show TV.  However, now I stay home, and one day I caught The Ellen Show… and enjoyed the heck out of it.  So, I made it a point to watch the next day.  And the next.  And the next.  And, before I knew it, I had another daytime talk show set to record every single day.

 

My guy even accused me of having a TV-crush on Ellen because I couldn’t stop talking about what she had said or what she had done on her show each day when he got home from work.  So, maybe I do?  Why not?  She’s funny, entertaining, and extremely giving.  Her generosity has made me cry on multiple occasions.  AND, she brought Sophia Grace and Rosie into my life.

Ellen with Sophia Grace and Rosie… I love these girls!!

Now that my mom is in retirement, I asked her to make a point to catch an episode of Ellen.  She found it difficult, considering my dad is home with her most days and he feels she already watches enough talk shows, so I conveniently played a taped episode one afternoon when they were visiting.  And, guess what?  Both she AND my father said Ellen might just have the best daytime/talk television show on the air today… and now they watch every day.

Ellen gives some of the best interviews, plays some of the most entertaining games, pranks some of the biggest celebrities, and her generosity extends beyond belief.  She helps families in need, provides support for schools and children, and she has a big heart for all animals.

Her generosity doesn’t stop there…

Now, Ellen isn’t Oprah.  She doesn’t give things away to her audience members every episode.  But, when she does, she does!  Which brings up the point of today’s post…

The 12 Days of Giveaways!!

If I’ve done my math correctly, today should be Day 4.  For those of us at home, we too can have a chance to win.  Entry is simple, so why not give it a try?  I’m sure the likelihood of our winning is slim to none, but we definitely won’t win if we don’t play.  Right?

And if this gets anyone who doesn’t already watch to check out Ellen’s show… yay!!  I really think you’ll like it.

Now, let’s dance!

Ellen and First Lady Michelle Obama Dancing…

What do you think?  Do you watch Ellen?  Will you enter the “12 Days of Giveaways” contest?  I’d love to hear from you!

*****

Tiffany A. White is the author of the YA mystery Football Sweetheart series available on Kindle and Nook.  She is available for contact via Twitter, Facebook, Google+, or via email at tiffany {at} tiffanyawhite {dot} com.