Watchtower writings used to have some meat to them. They have been increasingly watered down and simplified. I think we all recognize that. So much so that the writings of the Watchtower are not much help at all because they are simply superficial and mostly concerned with outside appearances.
I have been 'out of the Watchtower' for several years now and therefore have had the chance to read and study different religions and writings in Christianity itself. I am increasingly amazed at how much better material there is out there. There really has been well thought out and well written material on Christian belief and living over the centuries.
As far as modern Christian writers who would you recommend? I myself will list several writers I have found helpful. Not to preach to anyone but to let those who may be searching know there are alternatives available that can be helpful. Several of these were in fact recommended to me from a former JW who frequented this site years ago.
I probably have forgotten some. In addition I highly recommend a book by Jeffrey Swartz entitled 'You Are Not Your Brain'.