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A powerful tale of thirst, illness, and obsession


Patrick is almost finished university when his life turns upside down. It begins innocently enough, with a newly developed appreciation for the taste of water. His love of water quickly becomes an obsession, and before long, Patrick is drinking twenty cups a day. Then he starts experiencing other changes: exhaustion, weight loss, and (naturally) constant urination. He begins to fall behind in his last semester, but can’t even muster up the energy to care. That’s when Patrick lands in intensive care, where he develops a new obsession: survival.


The Water Lover offers a raw, vulnerable look at the realities of chronic illness, the limits of the Canadian medical system, and the rush of finding that elusive Prince album on vinyl.


About Patrick Allaby


Patrick Allaby is a cat person living in the dog part of Sackville, New Brunswick. He was diagnosed with type 1 diabetes in 2015, and since then his work has largely focused on the experience of living with chronic illness. His first book, “Martin Peters” was published by Conundrum Press in 2019 and he has an MFA from the University of Waterloo.


About Conundrum 25


CONUNDRUM 25, a landmark series of gem-like volumes, presents masters of the graphic short story form at work in a range of styles. From precious rediscoveries to gender-playful fictions, fabular futurism to uncanny imaginings, there are stories by a new generation of Conundrum artists alongside classics of the form. Bringing together past, present, and future in our 25th year and beyond, CONUNDRUM 25 is a celebratory compendium of collectable work.