Happy Saturday and welcome to my stop on the What I Want You to See blog tour!! Today I have an excerpt of this wonderful book to share with you, plus links to follow the rest of the tour and enter to win a print copy of What I Want You to See!
What I Want You to See by Catherine Linka
on February 4, 2020
Genres: YA, Contemporary
Winning a scholarship to California’s most prestigious art school seems like a fairy tale ending to Sabine Reye’s awful senior year. After losing both her mother and her home, Sabine longs for a place where she belongs.
But the cutthroat world of visual arts is nothing like what Sabine had imagined. Colin Krell, the renowned faculty member whom she had hoped would mentor her, seems to take merciless delight in tearing down her best work—and warns her that she’ll lose the merit-based award if she doesn’t improve.
Desperate and humiliated, Sabine doesn’t know where to turn. Then she meets Adam, a grad student who understands better than anyone the pressures of art school. He even helps Sabine get insight on Krell by showing her the modern master’s work in progress, a portrait that’s sold for a million dollars sight unseen.
Sabine is enthralled by the portrait; within those swirling, colorful layers of paint is the key to winning her inscrutable teacher’s approval. Krell did advise her to improve her craft by copying a painting she connects with . . . but what would he think of Sabine secretly painting her own version of his masterpiece? And what should she do when she accidentally becomes party to a crime so well -plotted that no one knows about it but her?
Complex and utterly original, What I Want You to See is a gripping tale of deception, attraction, and moral ambiguity.
Then, just when I think it can’t get any worse, Krell stands and begins to circle the room. “Questioning. Provoking. Agitating. CALINVA’s mission is carved into its very walls.”
I know that what comes out of his mouth next will eviscerate me, and I grip the easel as the blood drains from my head.
“This piece, this pretty little craft project is insignificant and utterly forgettable. ART should never be insignificant. It should never be forgettable!”
At last, Krell stops and looks from me to the rest of the class, and I brace myself for him to make an example of me.
“Ms. Reyes,” he says, “until you risk failure, until you face the fear that there’s nothing uniquely creative floating in the inter-cranial recesses of your mind, until you express your ideas in a way that is not literal, but entirely unexpected so our experience of art is altered—until then, your paintings will be a waste of paint and canvas.”
I can’t feel the floor beneath my feet. I lift my painting off the easel, and say, “Thank you, Professor Krell,” in a voice so strained it’s hoarse.
I take my seat. It’s my own fault, I think, shoving the canvas into my portfolio case. But obviously Krell enjoyed humiliating me.
Catherine Linka has been immersed in books her whole life, most recently as a writer and bookseller. She’s the author of the young adult novel WHAT I WANT YOU TO SEE as well as the dystopian duology A GIRL CALLED FEARLESS and A GIRL UNDONE. Catherine lives in Southern California and watches hawks and hummingbirds when she should be writing.
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