Whilst there are thousands of cook books in the market place, both past and present, it would be impossible to read and recommend everyone there has ever been, but if there is one great reference book for classic cuisine it is Larousse Gastronomique.
It contains over 2,500 core recipes.
It is divided into four sections (listed below), each section then broken down further into ingredients listed alphabetically and providing several recipes per ingredient.
Larousse Gastronomique divisions:
Meat, poultry and game
Fish and seafood
Desserts, cakes and pastries
Vegetables and salads