Translation:He is reading a book.
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However, i believe it's possible to leave out 在 as a marker of progressive tense, and it can still be implied by context in certain situations. Like if you said 我今天学习中文 then it means "today I am studying Chinese" and you don't need to add 在 to make it progressive, as it's implied.
It certainly can be.
Just be aware that "在" does clarify the continuous/progressive aspect, suggesting, in this case, "is (currently) reading" (and it could also be "was reading" or "will be reading", in the right context). However, the progressive sense can also come from the context.
("在" isn't properly called a "tense" marker, as progressiveness or continuousness is an aspect , not a tense, besides which Chinese doesn't have tenses.)
书 does mean book specifically. There are more precise words for journals/diaries etc. 看书 can also mean studying though. 看 is a verb also used to watch things such as films and to look at something. I think of it more as "to consume with one's eyes" instead of read/watch. Unless you already mentioned a book I'm not sure if in a real conversation it would be clear what he was doing without using 书
Perhaps it's not out of the question. However, in its intransitive use (i.e. without an object), "reading" can usually imply books, magazines, journals, newspapers, etc., and the activity of "reading" in that sense can be translated by "阅读", which can also be used without an object, unlike "看" in this context.
"看书" is reading books (or a book) in particular, though in a more limited sense and in the right context I believe it can also mean "to study" or "to be studying", i.e. to be sitting down in front of one's schoolbooks and reading them (but see my other comment in this regard).
(The transitive uses of "reading" for reading temperatures, tea leaves, minds, etc. are of course a distraction here.)
In fact they both can mean "read(ing) a book" or "read(ing) books", though "读书" is also often used to mean "study".
("看书" can also mean/imply studying in the right context, though to my understanding it's in a more limited sense, as in to be currently sitting at one's desk and reading one's books, whereas "读书" is broader and can also effectively mean "to be enrolled in a program of study", e.g. "他在北大读书".)
No, not really.
"在" indicates a progressive/continuous aspect, meaning that the activity is happening right at the time when the sentence is being said, or at whatever specific time is being referred to. "He reads books" means that he does it in general, rather than that it is happening, was happening, or will be happening at a particular time.