Stephanie, I also prefer the 24mm for it's nice wide views compared to the 28m and 35mm.
I run a Sigma 2.8 24mm lens which I find excellent, especially from a money side, I bought mine new 21 years ago. I have run it against the equivalent Nikkor and there is a just detectable difference in the contrast but it hasn't been a problem for me. The Sigma also runs 1/2 stop aperture detents, which I find very nice.
I also have the 2.8 series E 28 Nikon lens. Picked it up about 15 years ago and have tested it against the AI version and found the difference to be minimal to not noticeable. They are really cheap and good value.
I also have the series E 35 2.8 but I don't think it is great, it is my loaner lens to people.