In a world where people shed their skin every seven years, it's just a fact of life that we will cast of all the attachments of our old life. With every moult we become a new person, and though we can discard the past, the skin remembers, brings it all back if we touch it. And when our loves are part of us, those memories of love can be bought, if you know the right people.
Introducing the new drug, Suscutin, that will prevent the moult. Now you can keep your skin forever. Now you never need to change who you are.
But it's not so simple for celebrity bodyguard Rose Allington, who suffers from a rare disease. Her moults come quickly, changing everything about her life, who she is, who she loves.
Meanwhile, her former client, superstar actor Max Black, is hooked on Suscutin, because he knows moulting could lose him everything. When one of his skins is stolen, and the theft is an inside job, he needs the best who ever worked for him on the job - even if she's no longer the same person.
Because Max has a film to make about the Stuck Six, the world famous sextet of lovers, who share a perfect life. The Six have trusted him to tell the love story that captivated the world.
The Loosening Skin peels away the layers of these stories, exploring our definitions of love, sex and friendship, and what it means to grow, and change.
Aliya Whiteley writes across many different genres and lengths. Her first published full-length novels, Three Things About Me and Light Reading, were comic crime adventures. Her 2014 SF-horror novella The Beauty was shortlisted for the James Tiptree and Shirley Jackson awards. The following historical-SF novella, The Arrival of Missives, was a finalist for the Campbell Memorial Award, and her noir novel The Loosening Skin was shortlisted for the Arthur C Clarke Award.
She has written over one hundred published short stories that have appeared in Interzone, Black Static, Strange Horizons, The Dark, McSweeney’s Internet Tendency and The Guardian, as well as in anthologies such as Unsung Stories’ 2084 and Lonely Planet’s Better than Fiction.
She also writes a regular non-fiction column for Interzone.