McHugh & Slavney (1998) The Perspective of Psychiatry
Discusses the conceptual nature of psychiatry. McHugh strives to provide a better diagnostic model that is more biomedically based than the current DSM.
Kandel (2005) Psychiatry, Psychoanalysis, and the New Biology of Mind
A collection of his essays and speeches. For someone interested in biological psychiatry or the movement to bring the field back closer to biomedicine, read these works."
Saddock & Saddock (2007) Syopsis of Psychiatry
A great survey of the field. It provides just enough detail to introduce the reader to a given topic. References allow one the opportunity to explore further.
Gabbard (2005) Psychodynamic Psychiatry in Clinical Practice
Amazing introduction to the field of psychodynamic psychiatry/psychoanalysis. I was, at first, frustrated to learn this topic because of the mind-boggeling number of books on analysis. Gabbard does a good job integrating current day neuroscience into traditional theories of ego, object relations, and attachment.
Beck (1976) Cognitive Therapy for the Emotional Disorders
If you want to study the conceptual roots of cognitive behavioral theory, start here.
American Psychoanalytic Association (2006) Psychodynamic Diagnostic Manual
Takes DSM diagnoses and fleshes them out psychodynamically. Wonderful for personality disorders.
Beck (1995) Cognitive Therapy: Basics and Beyond
If your interested in cognitive therapy, this book provides the logistics of its implementation.
One of my favorites. Through flow-charts, describes how the different diagnoses are differentiated. For a student, it's a gem because it explains the difference between MDD, bereavement, med-induced depression, substance-induced depression, etc, a common question type on the shelf exam.
Spitzer (2002) DSM-IV-TR Case Book: A Learning Companion to the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders
It brings the DSM diagnoses to life. For a student, it provides the first window into the world of individually-experienced psychopathology.
MGH/McLean (2009): MGH/McLean Hospital Residency Handbook of Psychiatry
My go-to resource on the wards. All the information you need for diagnosis and management of inpatients is right there.
Stahl (2013) Stahl's Essential Psychopharmacology: The Prescriber's Guide
Complements "Essential Psychopharmacology" nicely. It serves as a resource for the practical day-to-day of a psychopharmacologist.