Skip to content

By Clint Hutzulak

“Clint Hutzulak’s The Beautiful Dead End is an extravagantly mysterious and wildly original first novel in the tradition of other great dead end, drug-and-booze books like Alexander Trocchi’s Cain’s Book and William Burroughs’ Junkie. It’s also a ghost story, a mystery novel and a love story combined. It’s sentiments are death-oriented – one senses the influence of Japanese cinema; but the orientation towards death only serves to throw the living into high relief. This is a beautifully sad, lovely book.”
-Douglas Glover, author of Elle


Huzulak_The beautiful dead end

The Beautiful Dead End is a visceral crime thriller that takes the reader on a existential journey to the “other side” and almost back again. In a bizarre, shadowy interzone populated by disturbing characters, our anti-hero confronts the dark secrets of his past, and comes face to face with the consequences of having lived an unexamined life.

“Hutzulak at his best creates scenes shimmering with presence, in which nothing is extraneous to his purpose. Even things such as an image seen in passing… resonate as emblems of something essential.”
The Globe and Mail

“So startlingly fresh it is hard to believe it is a first novel. Apparently, it took Hutzulak twelve years to complete the book — a fact that underscores the precision and confidence that is woven throughout the novel. It is a brilliant debut.”
Vancouver Sun

“This is an astonishing debut, powerful, scary, sexual, existential in scope. Hutzulak is a writer to watch, and possibly to fear.”
Books in Canada

“The Beautiful Dead End defies categorization, breaking new literary ground while still retaining the attention-holding qualities of a pulp-fiction thriller.”
Winnipeg Free Press

“If you think of two movies, Memento and Mulholland Drive, both released in the months prior to the novel’s publication, that also turn noir convention on its head, you’ll have a pretty good idea of the kind of company to be found in The Beautiful Dead End.”

“With his exceptional eye for detail, Hutzulak immerses us in some vividly painful scenes…. makes us feel we’re glimpsing an intimate secret, shadowing someone on a trip we’re not sure we want to experience, even vicariously.”
Prairie Fire Review of Books

“This is a remarkable, at times terrifying, novel…. (A)n achievement in Canadian literature.”
Front and Centre

“A taut neo-noir thriller that is simultaneously an engaging page-turner and a literary contemporary novel, showcasing a visually arresting style….. There are passages of such startling brilliance that the words seem to rise from the page…. The reader is constantly torn between the desire to savour each paragraph and the urgency to turn the page.”
Victoria Times-Colonist

“Clint’s writing contains such lyrical clarity that I found it hard to put his book down.”

“Fierce control…. A novel that is sure of its haunting, unthinking despair.”
Georgia Straight

“An audacious debut… a startling combination of old-fashioned morality tale and incisive gutting of contemporary losers…. The gritty descriptions and dialogue have a gruesome appeal…. The Beautiful Dead End does not have a molecule of sentimentality.”
Monday Magazine


Anvil Press, Canada, 2001

Éditions Alto, in Quebec, April 2005 as Point Mort


Shortlisted for the 2002 Books in Canada First Novel Award

Finalist for 2001 ReLit Award for Fiction

Winner of 2002 Monday Magazine Readers’ choice M Award for Favourite Book by a Victoria Author

Named Best of 2002 Top 25 books on