1. [18C–1900s] (UK Und.) a wallet or pocket-book.
2. [mid–late 18C] (UK Und.) a book.
3. [mid-19C+] (also luminous reader) a marked card; thus (gambling) readers, a crooked deck of cards that a cheat can read from the backs.
4. [1910s–40s] (US Und.) a permit, e.g. to beg, to street-sell.
5. [1930s] a newspaper.
6. [1930s] (US Und.) a small-time thief who follows postmen or delivery men to their destination, having sneaked a look at the label, then claims to be the official recipient.
7. [20C+] (US Und.) a warrant for arrest.
8. [1930s–50s] (UK Und.) a ‘wanted’ poster.
9. [1930s+] (drugs) a drug prescription; thus reader with a tail, an illegally issued prescription which had been traced by narcotics agents.
10. [1940s+] (UK prison) any form of reading matter, books, magazines, comics etc.
11. [1960s] a pornographic novel, without pictures.
[early 19C] (UK Und.) a pickpocket specializing in stealing wallets and pocket-books.
[late 18C–mid–19C] a pickpocket specializing in the theft of wallets and pocket-books.
[late 18C–mid-19C] (UK Und.) to steal a pocketbook.