A couple years ago I read this mind-bending sci-fi epic tragedy, Phoenix: a Tale of the Future by Osamu Tezuka. Tezuka is to eastern comics what Will Eisner and Alan Moore are to western comics. And then some. Tezuku is considered to be the father of manga and created over 150,000 pages of manga and over 60 animated movies and series before his death in 1989. The Phoenix saga was his most ambitious work, but he died before he could finish it. I’m pretty sure A Tale of the Future was the only book of the saga available in English at the time I read it, but now there’s three more books available. I can’t wait. Don’t let the cheesey covers fool you, this is some serious reading.

Wikipedia entry on Phoenix.

Some other books of note: Adolf and Buddha.