What books are most important for a neophyte philosopher to read?

But beware: Many introductions written in the West (e.g. Russell's, recommended by Prof George) will introduce you only to Western philosophy, and there is a lot of very good philosophy pursued in many non-Western traditions. I recommend Ben-Ami Scharfstein's excellent introduction to world philosophy, or Robert Solomon's and Kathleen Higgins' short introduction to world philosophy for a more global approach.