11 Books You Never Thought You'd Read (but Will Fall in Love with Instantly)

Like most of us, you've probably heard of graphic novels—but haven't read too many. Here are 10 new titles (plus one classic) that make you think, feel and daydream just like any other book.

Everything Is Its Own Reward

Everything Is Its Own Reward

220 pages; City Lights Publishers
In this drawn travelogue, Paul Madonna takes us on a tour of the world's cities, starting in his native San Francisco and traveling to Paris, Buenos Aires, New York and Rome. Pen and ink wash illuminate the character of the local architecture, as well as everyday street objects like fountains, traffic cones, graffiti and power lines. This book, the author's second, originated in his longtime comic strip in the San Francisco Chronicle. When his international images are paired with his sparse, poetic words—sometimes thought-provoking one-liners such as "You don't get anywhere without searching" and sometimes long, meandering sections of dialogue and story—the effect is haunting. Though Madonna travels the globe, it's not the famous sites or wonders that catch his attention. He sees the beauty in a slice of metal siding or in the shadows that trash cans cast on a street at sundown—and the experience of being in his world, if only for 220 pages, is mesmerizing.
— Abbe Wright