X doesn’t have a name. He thought he had one—or many—but that might be the result of the failing memories of the personalities imprinted within him. Or maybe he really is called X.
He’s also not as human as he believes himself to be.
But when he discovers the existence of another—above ground, outside the protection of the Warren—X must learn what it means to be human, or face the destruction of their two species.
Right after finishing The Warren I wanted to read it all over again, to better grasp what I just read but at the same time knowing I wouldn’t be getting any more answers than the first time. And this is why I loved this story. It’s frustrating in a weird, delicious way.
I love stories that completely confuse me and where I end up having no idea about what’s going on and no clue where the story might go. The Warren is exactly such a story. It pretty much felt like finding a stranger’s journal and just reading it without knowing anything about the owner, not who they are nor where in the world they live, what their world is like. The Warren is 100% character driven and the surrounding world only a tool, making it all the more fascinating by having such a limited amount of characters in the story.
Brian Evenson brings the unreliable narrator to a whole new level, creating an eerie and captivating atmosphere, telling you everything and nothing at all. This is the kind of story that keeps you clued to the page, wanting to know what is going on, but at the same time not really expecting many reasonable answers.
The ending is as beautiful as it is frustrating and coming way faster than I would have liked. The Warren is not a story that will give you answers, only questions. And it’s one of those rare cases where I’m perfectly fine with that.