from the last read I was very hooked on the collection of essays by Denis Grozdanovich entitled "The Art of Doing Almost Nothing"
The book is amazing, strikes the author's vivid mind, his deep knowledge and interest in literature and his subtle humor, so successful fitting into serious reasoning.
One such book for me was Ken Kesey's One One Flew Over the Cuckoo's Nest. McMurphy, the protagonist of the story, has become for me a guiding star and an example of the person I would like to be like. His words really became my life motto: "Well, at least I tried, damn it, at least I tried!"
In the 5th grade I read "The Master and Margarita" I understood little, but it impressed me beyond words. I decided to reread it. Then I realized a lot, the idea of eternal and selfless love between people stuck in my head, and that you will definitely receive (it does not matter from God, from the devil or someone else) a reward if you did not yield to your principles, or punishment if you gave up those what is dear to you.
When I was 13-14 years old, after reading Seliger "Catcher in the Rye", I was amazed that in the book all my thoughts, everything was removed from my tongue, only heroes with foreign names. She rather supported me and helped me start a long and difficult path towards my goal, which still needed to be determined!
Most of all I was influenced by the book of the great alcoholic, parasite, political commissar and humorist Yaroslav Hasek "The Adventures of the Brave Soldier Schweik during World War".
From it I learned that, it turns out, there are effective methods of communication with any kind of idiots. Josef Schweik may not be the best example to follow, but from his adventures I learned to look at others much more calmly and condescendingly. This is useful
Most of all I was influenced by "Bhagavad-gita As It Is" and other books by A.C. Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupada. Although before that I had studied the philological studies, I read many books on philosophy, psychology, esotericism, scientific pop, fiction. I can say with confidence - even if you do not see in his books something that can be followed, you will certainly look at the world in a new way and learn to distinguish between the truth and lies of both individual people and at the level of states and the entire planet)))
It is difficult to say which books influenced me the most, but the following are probably worth highlighting:
From fiction, this is "The Left Hand of Darkness" by Ursula LeGuin. After that, it became clear to me that, in general, there is no clear line between science fiction and fantasy, that the boundaries of the canons can and should be violated, and that the "correct" science fiction is a world construction from scratch.
Further - this, oddly enough, Dostoevsky's Crime and Punishment. I must say that at school I was able to finish reading this book only to half, after which I vomited from it. The rest of the half was "spoiled" by the literature lessons in which we took it. But it was this book that made me at one time take up the pen - more precisely, first the pencil, then the keyboard.
In general, these two books made me understand that I want to write science fiction and fantasy, and of high quality. And for quality, you need, albeit superficially, to have a broad understanding of science, technology, history, culture, languages - in general, in everything. And this interest for the rest of my life determined my reading style - now I even read works of art not so much for pleasure as for the development of my style. I’m not saying that this is good - but it just so happened.
Already in the wake of this interest, the next three books have had a special influence on me. All three are characterized by the fact that they bring together seemingly disparate areas.
First, it is "Language as Instinct" by Stephen Pinker. For my fantasy worlds, I tried to create languages, and I learned a lot from this book both about them and about linguistics in general.
Secondly, this is "Guns, Germs and Steel" by Jared Diamond. A simple, concise explanation of why some cultures develop and others do not, not in terms of geographic determinism, but in terms of geographic boundaries. Since then, every time I take a bite of bread, the thought flashes in my head that it contains 14% protein, while in rice and corn it is 2-3%.
Finally, the third book is "The New Mind of the King" by Roger Penrose. It brings together seemingly completely unrelated areas of physics and mathematics into a single picture, giving an idea of the elegance of the entire surrounding world.
My top 3:
Wassily Kandinsky. "Point and line on a plane"
Marshall McLuhan. "Understanding Media"
Leo Tolstoy. "Confession"
All of them served not only as food for thought at the turning points of my life, but also, I think, determined and determine my further development.