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Self-promo 2023 (ep. 14): Rose Marzin

Better Than This is an uplifting, inspirational story about finding love second time around, breaking free of insecurity and believing that you deserve to be happy.

Better than this, Lucid Dreamers Publications, 2022


At 33, Taamarai is sure that life should be better than this: worrying about paying rent, about her weight, about keeping in touch with her family on the other side of the Atlantic… At least she has her husband. Darren’s always got her back, always understands.

When she unexpectedly comes into some money, Taamarai knows she has to take her chance. Moving away, starting a new college course, waitressing to make ends meet – it’s still hard but it feels good to try something new. Darren will join her when he can and, in the meantime, she’s doing this for both of them.

That doesn’t mean new isn’t scary. Nervous and lonely, she is glad to meet her downstairs neighbour, a teenage girl called Ali, who seems desperate for a woman to look up to. Ali’s dad, Carl, is a different story. Rude and a bit shady, Taamarai is willing to put up with him for Ali’s sake but things are easier when he isn’t around, asking the questions she tries not to ask herself.

As her plans unfold, Taamarai begins to see her life from new angles. What if she is capable of more than she ever imagined and worthy of more than she has learned to accept?

Watching his daughter realise that maybe she can make something of her life, Carl can’t help being drawn to the shy, apologetic woman in the apartment upstairs, who never gives up and somehow finds her way past all the things he uses to keep people away. It had always seemed safer that way, but now he can’t help wondering what better might look like.


Better Than This celebrates real life and real love, with the messy bits left in: a relatable antidote to stories about perfect people and perfect lives.
It is an uplifting, empowering novel about learning to believe in yourself and value your own dreams.
Exploring the long-term power of coercive control, Better Than This digs into the reality of weaponised love, even for capable, educated women.
Multi-cultural, cross-class and full of family, this is a novel that embraces diversity and complexity.


Rose Marzin is a pen name. I live in England with my partner and two cats and mostly I write. As Rose Marzin, I write contemporary and historical romance (look out for new titles, coming soon), exploring the everyday miracle of love. In my day job, I write history. When I’m not writing, I love cooking, walking in the country, reading and learning languages.

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