How to quote a book

how to quote a book

Books are intellectual property. When you write an essay, an article, or paper of any kind, and you refer to or quote from a book, you must provide correct references about the author. Failure to do so is considered plagiarism. The different ways to how to quote a book in a paper are listed below. All are correct and recognized, but if you write a university paper, check with your professor if you use the right citation style!

Familiarize yourself with the common citation methods! In any case, if you need to quote a line from a book, quote dialogue from a book, quote a passage from a book, a sentence from a book, a book title or something else, use only one format, that you give a reference – each way has specific rules regarding capitalization, punctuation, and place of the data. 

Modern Language Association (MLA). This is a form of citation that is mostly used in the faculties of the liberal arts and human sciences at universities.

American Psychological Association (APA). This citation style is mostly used in university social science faculties and is always used when writing for the American Psychological Association.

The Chicago Manual of Style. This citation style is often used to write papers in literature, history, and art. However, the majority of teachers use either APA or MLA for quotations.

How to quote a book title

The way you work with the name book in your work is the choice of a style that is not the most important of the tasks to be solved.

So, how to quote a book title in an essay? In accordance with the principles adopted by the Association of the Modern Language, the names of books (and other complete works, such as newspapers and magazines) should be in italics. So, if you follow one of these instructions, you should choose Stefan King’s Shine course.

AP Stylebook, on the other hand, suggests using quotation marks around book titles (unless the dictionary and almanacs contain formatting). Example: “Eat Pray, Love”, “Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows”, “Bossypants”.

How to Quote a Book in APA

Cite book references within the body text and on the reference page! The APA (American Psychological Association) requires that book citations appear in both places. For example, if you are quoting from The Epic of America, you must include the reference within your text with the title (italics) and the year of publication: The Epic of America, (1931). You must also correctly specify the reference on the reference page in the special formatting for citing authors, editors, and books:

Cite from books:

 Author, A. A. (year of publication). Work title. (Write the first letter of the title and the subtitle in italics and in capital letters!) Location: Editor. 

For example:

Susanka, S. (2007). The not so big life: Making room for what really matters. New York, NY: Random House.

Cite from an edition without an author: 

Brown, C., & Smith, A. (Eds.). (2010). How to make widgets. Boston, MA: ABC Publishing.

Quoting from an edition with an author: Gray, R. (2010). The path to glory. A. Anderson (Ed.). Boston, MA: ABC Publishing.

Cite from a translation: 

Pierre, P. S. (1904). A journey through the mind. (T. Garvey, Trans.). New York, NY: ABC Publishing.

Cite from a later edition: 

Aiken, M.E., (1997). The gold standard (7th ed.). Chicago, IL: University of Chicago Press.

Cite from a paragraph or chapter of an edition: 

Lander, J. M., & Goss, M. (2010). How the west was settled. In T. Grayson (Ed.), The Rockies and beyond (pp. 107-123). New York, NY: Simon & Schuster.

Cite from a multi-volume edition: 

Paulson, P. (Ed.). (1964). Dictionary of inventions (Vols. 1-6). New York, NY: Scribner’s.

How to Quote a Book MLA

Quote from a book in MLA both in the text and on a “Quoted Works” page! Text quotation is on, which means that the quotation source is surrounded by parentheses after you use a quotation or after you paraphrase something from a book. Here is how to quote a book in an essay in MLA format.

Name the author

Always name the author (and/or the publisher), the book title, year of publication, publisher, place of publication, and the medium (print, internet, DVD, etc.)!

Arrange your quoted works page so that it exactly corresponds to your in-text references! 

The quote or phrase that you use in the text of your paper must first appear on the left side of the corresponding entry on your “Cited Works” page.

Quote books according to the author page citation method! 

The MLA format follows the author-page method in the in-text citation style. Only the author of the book, then the page number (p) that refers to your citation or your paraphrased passage, must be included in your text, but your in-text reference must also be included in full on your cited works page.

Kingsolver stated that his prose was considered by many to be “at times, pedantic” (Kingsolver 125). This informs your reader that the note by the author named Kingsolver can be found on page 125. Your readers can use the name of the book and other pertinent ones

Use correct quotes for multiple editions! 

Again, page numbers are required, but it is important to provide detailed information about the edition of the book you are quoting from, as someone reading your paper needs to know which edition you are referring to. (This rule almost always applies to classical and literary works)

The corresponding reference on your cited works page (for a work that has two or more editions) must be the page number, the edition number from which you cited, followed by a semicolon, and the part, the volume, the Chapter, section or paragraph.

Name all authors! 

If you are quoting from a book that has more than one author, you must include the names of all the authors in your information:

Berger, Mitry, and Neilson state that tougher gun laws must be enacted (176). The authors state that “Tighter gun control in the United States in no way violates the Second Amendment rights to bear arms” (Berger, Mitry, and Neilson 176).

Mention all books cited by a single author! 

If you use quotations from two or more books by the same author, you must include each book in your text and on your quoted works page:

Lipton notes that daily writing practice is “critical to a writer’s success” (Practice, Practice, Practice! 5). Nevertheless, Lipton further explains that “one must sometimes walk away and do anything but write for a week at a time” (A Writer’s Advice 7). These references inform the reader that quotes from 2 different books by the same author have been used.

Quote from multi-volume works!

If you are quoting from another volume of a multi-volume work, you must state the volume number in your reference. This number is followed by a period, space, and the page number (p):

… as Tangener writes in A History of the Universe (1: 87-101). This tells the reader that the quote can be found in volume 1 on pages 87-101.

Do not neglect the reference for an e-book! 

Generally speaking, the answer to how to properly quote a book is the same! The reference should contain the same elements as the reference for a printed book: author, year of publication, and title. However, e-books often do not have page numbers, so there is no need to list them in the reference. In addition to the basic information of the reference, e-book references should contain the source (URL or DOI):

Anderson, R. (2010). The Love of Money [Kindle]. Taken from Http: //www.xxxx. Refer to the latest edition of the citation method you use to provide your reference for e-books! This method of citation is subject to numerous revisions in all instructions.

Let your common sense guide you! 

It is not necessary to document your sources for general proverbs or for well-known quotations that have been around for so long that they are considered a public area. In other words, do not waste your time looking for the original source of “Save on time, then you have to be in need”!

The location of the publisher should use the two-digit postal abbreviation (do not write dots!) For US states, for example, write California as CA and Florida as FL.

Always write “p.” for page numbers; do not write: “Page xx.”

Note: For the US “place” you should always list the city and state, using the two-digit postal abbreviation without a period (New York, NY)!

If your instructions only require the surname of an author, but you quote from a book that has 2 authors with the same surname, you can use the first letter of the first name for each author.

Always refer to the latest edition of instructions! 

University graduates should also refer to the MLA Guide and Scientific Publishing Guide.

Citation instructions on how to quote a book, article, or another text in an essay, can be found in the references section of most public libraries.

Do not confuse AP with APA! AP refers to the Associated Press and is the style of writing that journalists use.


Amelia Davis
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By Amelia Davis

Firstly I am the reader, not the writer.
But I have already written a huge amount of inspirational and educational articles to motivate young people to read more and study better. I am really fond of reading, it's my true passion! Also, I am into volunteering. I feel like I do really good work when organizing literature lections and discussions with children and students. I have a PhD in literature, and I write the inspirable literature articles for more than 10 years.