Book Review: The Stars Fell Into the Ocean by Elizabeth TenHouten

Love and heartbreak are among the most common topics explored in music and poetry, and for good reason. The universality of these topics and the intensity of emotion that accompanies them have allowed countless artists throughout the ages to form an instant connection with their audiences through the tragedy and beauty that words can convey. Elizabeth TenHouten’s “The Stars Fell Into the Ocean”, is another entry into the ever-unfolding chronicle of the greatest joys and the deepest pains that characterize the beginning and end of true love.

Even before reading the first stanza of poetry, “The Stars Fell Into the Ocean”,n already qualifies as an impressive and striking work of art from its first impression  as both an exquisite collection of poetry and a stunning collage of visual art. The book draws on Elizabeth’s experience and artistic instincts as a former professional model who has worked with creative minds such as fine artists, Emma Ferreira and Daniel Maltzman, photographer Tyler Shields, and fashion designer Natalia Fedner. The book features creative, artistically crafted monochrome photographs of Elizabeth alongside each of her poems. Far from detracting from the overall experience, the photographs enhance the experience of absorbing the poems by giving Elizabeth an alternative avenue for expressing the same emotions found within the carefully chosen words of the stanzas. Because of the book’s beautiful photographs, visual expressiveness and overall presentation, many readers have chosen it as a perfect show piece coffee table art book. 

The accompanying photo from the poem “Inhale”

Of course, the book’s main draw is the poetry and its success hinges on  the poems’ ability to evoke strong emotions and stand out in readers’ hearts and minds. Within the span of the book’s many pages of poetry, Elizabeth manages to be vulnerable, emotional, raw, and hopeful. In addition to love and heartbreak, she covers topics such as personal transformation and nature, in the tradition of the great pastoral poets who found their greatest inspiration in the natural world. It is likely that readers who have experienced the same depths of joy and heartbreak Elizabeth has sincerely brought to life, will also feel inspired by the inner strength she portrays on the road to loving again.

“The Stars Fell Into the Ocean” is Elizabeth’s third release as a published author. She previously published the lifestyle and recipe books “Cooking Well: Beautiful Skin”, and international bestseller, “Natural Beauty: Homemade Recipes for Radiant Skin and Hair.” Elizabeth has also been active as a creator and curator of content for magazines such as Celeb Life and Celeb Stuff. She notably served as Editor-in-Chief for both publications for several years. She also wrote the monthly column “Natural Beauty” for The Beverly Hills Times Magazine. Recently, Elizabeth has transitioned into music as another medium for artistic expression, releasing the album “Broken” in 2020. She plans to release her second album, “Dream,” in 2025.

Reading “The Stars Fell Into the Ocean” is a cathartic, meaningful experience that seasoned poetry lovers and casual readers alike can enjoy. The book will be a notable addition to any poetry enthusiast’s collection because of its timeless, visually stunning design and its ability to speak deeply about all the thoughts and feelings anyone who has experienced heartbreak can relate to. 

Elizabeth TenHouten, Author

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