In this article, The Burglar Himself tells us which five books he can read over and over…

I get to do a lot of reading on the job. (No, not the job that involves breaking and entering. I’m talking about my day job, selling pre-owned works of literature at Barnegat Books on East Eleventh Street in Greenwich Village.) Far too many of those diurnal hours are spent with only my cat for company, so I usually have a book at hand when I’m otherwise unoccupied behind the counter.

Much of the time, it’s a book I’ve read before, and sometimes more than once. There’s a great comfort in settling down with a novel I know I’ll enjoy—because I’ve already done so. But not every book that’s a pleasure the first time around is going to wear well on a second visit.

Here are five—now how did I come up with that number?—that never let me down:

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