Tai-pan is one of the books I read over and over. My copy is more than 25 years old, and has no cover. (My son ripped the cover off when I foolishly tried to read while I was feeding him as an infant.)
I read Tai-pan when I'm in a sneaky, devious, political, back-stabbing, manipulative, business-oriented mood. Sometimes I read cozy mysteries. Sometimes I read business back-stabbing.
Tai-pan is just the classic for me. There's no way I can ever match the intricacies of Struan's life and business. It's a way of lighting-rodding my twisty inclinations.
Do you have "standard" books you read when you're in a particular mood? What are your favorites for each mood, and why?