Ok, I’m kinda late to this thread, but oh well.
I actually just finished Fawkes for the first time, and I have to put that on my list. I agree with you about how Nadine Brandes added complexity to her plot and characters to make it feel realistic, instead of the basic cut and dry bad guys vs good guys. Definitely an inspiration. 🙂
Ooh, I remember loving The Mysterious Benedict Society when I was younger! It’s such a fun and inventive series.
Les Miserables Yes, I loved that book!!! Also Crime and Punishment. Neither of those books shied away from tackling darker themes, yet their messages of redemption are amazing. <3
As far as some other books that have impacted me as a writer: All of Jane Austen’s books have inspired me to add more humor and sarcasm to my stories. 😛 Humor is something I usually don’t include. The Wingfeather Saga is another series that has made want to add more entertaining and funny scenes than I naturally tend to. And To Kill A Mockingbird feels so real and authentic… and it caused me to rethink how I build my characters and their voices.
a flower does not think of competing with the flower next to it.
it just blooms.