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How to Quote a Book

Last Updated: December 25, 2023 References

This article was reviewed by Gerald Posner . Gerald Posner is an Author & Journalist based in Miami, Florida. With over 35 years of experience, he specializes in investigative journalism, nonfiction books, and editorials. He holds a law degree from UC College of the Law, San Francisco, and a BA in Political Science from the University of California-Berkeley. He’s the author of thirteen books, including several New York Times bestsellers, the winner of the Florida Book Award for General Nonfiction, and has been a finalist for the Pulitzer Prize in History. He was also shortlisted for the Best Business Book of 2020 by the Society for Advancing Business Editing and Writing. There are 9 references cited in this article, which can be found at the bottom of the page. This article has been viewed 507,215 times.

When you’re writing an essay, using a quote can help validate your argument and make your writing stronger. Whether your paper is required to be in MLA or APA format, it’s easy to quote and cite a book the right way.

Incorporating Quotations into Your Text

Step 1 Be clear why you are using a quotation.

  • Quotations are often used to support ideas that might be disputed or are not common knowledge. An idea like, “Most people never live to see 100,” doesn’t need to be backed up by a quotation, but something like, “Many writers have described the power of fiction,” should probably be supported with quotations.
  • One can sometimes emphasize a particular point by backing it up with a quotation from a particularly impressive author.
  • Quotations can also add stylistic flare to your prose. For example, a sentence like, “When Shakespeare “shuffled off this mortal coil,” he likely had no idea the impact his work would make on Western culture” is a bit more interesting than if the same sentence started simply, “When Shakespeare died…”

Step 2 Work them into your text so they read like normal sentences.

  • If you are having trouble deciding if you’ve incorporated a quotation correctly, try reading it aloud to yourself. It can be easier to tell if a sentence works when you speak it.
  • Some examples of verbs used in signal phrases are claims, adds, writes, argues, asserts, confirms, points out, admits, concludes, observes, and implies. [3] X Research source

Step 3 Use brackets and ellipses to add or subtract words.

  • Insert new words into quotations by putting them inside brackets.
  • Remove existing words by replacing them with an ellipsis.
  • Note that this is only appropriate if you maintain the basic meaning of the quotation. It should not be used to twist an author’s words into something other than what she intended.
  • As an example, one could change the Nabokov quotation, “…art--not an "escape" (which is only a cleaner cell on a quieter floor), but relief from the itch of being,” into the sentence, “…art [is] not an “escape”…but relief from the itch of being.”

Quoting Books in MLA Format

Step 1 Insert short quotations into the body of the paragraph.

  • Indent the whole quotation one inch from the left.
  • Double-space it (in an MLA style research paper, everything should be double spaced).
  • Do not use quotation marks.

Step 3 Include an in-text citation after the quotation.

  • For example: "Maybe the best definition of art is simply “beauty plus pity” (Nabokov 251)."
  • If you reference the author’s name before the quotation, you don’t need to repeat it in the parenthesis following the quote. For example: "Nabokov defined art as “beauty plus pity” (251)."

Step 4 Make a Works Cited page.

  • Double-space the page, but do not skip spaces between citations.
  • Do not indent the first line of each citation, but indent all subsequent lines by 0.5 inches from the left.

Step 5 Put the full citation in your Works Cited page.

  • There are many variations on this basic format based on factors like how many authors the book has, and whether it is something like anthology, an ebook, or a self-published book. If the book you are quoting does not fit neatly into this formula, consult a resource like The Purdue Online Writing Lab. [10] X Research source

Quoting Books in APA Format

Step 1 Insert short quotations into the body of the paragraph.

  • Indent the whole quotation 1/2 inch from the left.
  • Double-space it (in an APA style paper, everything should be double spaced).

Step 3 Use a parenthetical citation.

  • If the author’s name is not included in the signal phrase, include the author’s last name, the year of publication, and the page number (all separated by commas) in the parenthetical citation following the quotation. For example: “He insists that “Quoting books is not difficult, but it can take time to get the hang of” (Smith, 2011, p. 15).”

Step 4 Make a reference list.

  • Double-space the page, like the rest of the paper, but do not skip spaces between citations.

Step 5 Put the full citation in your reference list.

  • There are many variations on this basic format based on factors like how many authors the book has, and whether it is something like anthology, an ebook, or a self-published book. If the book you are quoting does not fit neatly into this formula, consult a resource like The Purdue Online Writing Lab. [16] X Research source

Community Q&A

Community Answer

You Might Also Like

Cite a Book

  • ↑ http://writingcenter.unc.edu/handouts/quotations
  • ↑ http://department.monm.edu/english/mew/signal_phrases.htm
  • ↑ https://owl.english.purdue.edu/owl/resource/747/03
  • ↑ https://owl.english.purdue.edu/owl/resource/747/02
  • ↑ https://owl.english.purdue.edu/owl/resource/747/05
  • ↑ https://owl.english.purdue.edu/owl/resource/747/06
  • ↑ https://owl.english.purdue.edu/owl/resource/560/02
  • ↑ https://owl.english.purdue.edu/owl/resource/560/05
  • ↑ https://owl.english.purdue.edu/owl/resource/560/08

About This Article

Gerald Posner

If you want to use a quotation from a book when you’re writing an essay, try to work the quotation into the text as naturally as possible so it reads like a normal sentence. Connect the quote to the point you’re making by saying something like “Thoreau summed this up by saying…” or “Mark Twain once argued…” To make the quote as concise and relevant as possible, replace unnecessary passages with ellipses or use brackets to add or change words if necessary. For tips on citing your sources, keep reading! Did this summary help you? Yes No

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How to Write Book Titles in Your Essays

How to Write Book Titles in Your Essays

3-minute read

  • 26th May 2023

When writing an essay, you’re likely to mention other authors’ works, such as books, papers, and articles. Formatting the titles of these works usually involves using quotation marks or italics.

So how do you write a book title in an essay? Most style guides have a standard for this – be sure to check that first. If you’re unsure, though, check out our guide below.

Italics or Quotation Marks?

As a general rule, you should set titles of longer works in italics , and titles of shorter works go in quotation marks . Longer works include books, journals, TV shows, albums, plays, etc. Here’s an example of a book mention:

Shorter works include poems, articles, chapters of books, episodes of TV shows, songs, etc. If it’s a piece that’s part of a biggHow to Write Book Titles in Your Essayser work, the piece considered a short work:

Exceptions to the Rule

The rule for writing book titles in italics applies specifically to running text . If the book title is standing on its own, as in a heading, there’s no need to italicize it.

Additionally, if the book is part of a larger series and you’re mentioning both the title of the series and that of the individual book, you can consider the book a shorter work. You would set the title of the series in italics and place the book title in quotation marks:

Punctuation in Book Titles

Do you need to apply italics to the punctuation in a book title? The short answer is yes – but only if the punctuation is part of the title:

If the punctuation isn’t part of the title (i.e., the punctuation is part of the sentence containing the title), you shouldn’t include in the italics:

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Summary: Writing Book Titles in Essays

We hope you’ll now feel confident when you’re writing and formatting book titles in your essays. Generally, you should set the title in italics when it’s in running text. Remember, though, to check your style guide. While the standards we’ve covered are the most common, some style guides have different requirements.

And once you finish writing your paper, make sure you send it our way! We’ll make sure any titles are formatted correctly as well as checking your work for grammar, spelling, punctuation, referencing, and more. Submit a free sample to try our service today.

Frequently Asked Questions

How do you write the title of a book in a sentence.

Set the title of the book in italics unless the book is part of a larger work (e.g., a book that’s part of a series):

When do you use quotation marks for titles?

Place titles of shorter works or pieces that are contained in a larger work in quotation marks:

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Home / Guides / Citation Guides / How to Cite Sources / How to Cite a Book Title in APA, MLA or Chicago

How to Cite a Book Title in APA, MLA or Chicago

When writing a book title in the text, not the references, most academic style manuals require title-style capitalization and italics. For example, they would all format the book title Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince in the same way. However, each style manual follows slightly different rules for handling hyphenated terms and subtitles. For details, read the guide below.

Below are the guidelines on how to style a book title following MLA , APA , or Chicago.

  • Use title-style capitalization when writing book titles in the text: capitalize the first and last words in the title and any other major words.
  • Italicize book titles.
  • For example, Merriam-Webster’s Dictionary styles the word “rewrite” without a hyphen. So, in the book title  Live Free: Re-write Your Story , lowercase “write” after the prefix “re.”
  • Though you don’t typically capitalize articles in titles, do capitalize an article that starts a subtitle. In the above example, capitalize “The” since it starts the subtitle.
  • The first word of the title
  • The first word of a subtitle
  • The first word after a colon, em dash, or other end punctuation in a heading
  • Major words
  • Any words of four letters or more
  • Capitalize the second word in a compound hyphenated term in a title: Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince .
  • For subtitles, capitalize the first word of a subtitle, even if it is a short, minor word. For example, Queen of Scots: The True Life of Mary Stuart .
  • The first and last words in titles and subtitles
  • Prepositions, even if they are four letters or more
  • to (even as part of an infinitive verb)
  • Coordinating conjunctions
  • For example, in the book title Live Free: Re-write Your Story , lowercase “write” after the prefix “re.”
  • If the title includes a hyphenated spelled-out number or fraction, capitalize the second element (e.g., Catch Twenty-Two ).

If a book title appears in an article title, you style it the same way as described above. So for example, if the article you are citing is called: “Why Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets is the best book in the Harry Potter series,” you would instead style this as: “Why Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets  is the best book in the Harry Potter series.”

For more info on formatting rules for citation styles, visit our guides listed below:

Chicago guide

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Title of Source. The title is usually taken from an authoritative location in the source such as the title page. It is the name of the source you are using. Capitalize the following parts of speech in a title: nouns, pronouns, verbs, adjectives, adverbs, subordinating conjunctions (although, because, unless, after, until, when, where, while, etc.). Do not capitalize articles, prepositions, coordinating conjunctions, the "to" in infinitives if they appear in the middle of the title. A colon separates the title from the subtitle unless it ends in a question mark or exclamation. Titles should be italicized or enclosed in quotation marks. Titles that are independent and self-contained (e.g., books) and titles of containers (e.g., anthologies) should be italicized. Titles that are contained in larger works (e.g., short stories) should be in quotation s. Exceptions to the above rule are: 1) Scripture (Genesis, Bible, Gospels, Upanishads, Old Testament, Talmud, etc.) Titles of individualized scripture writings, however, should be italicized and treated like any other published work.(e.g. The Interlinear Bible) 2) Names of laws, acts and political documents (Bill of Rights, Declaration of Independence, Magna Carta, Treaty of Marseilles, etc.) 3) Musical compositions identified by form, number, and key (Beethoven's Symphony No. 7 in A, op. 92) 4) Series titles (Critical American Studies, Bollingen Series, etc.) 5) Conferences, seminars, workshops, and courses (MLA Annual Convention, English 110)

The title of the work follows the author and ends with a period . Mitchell, Margaret. Gone With the Wind . New York: Macmillan, 1961.

A sub-title is included after the main title . Joyce, Michael. Othermindedness: The Emergence of Network Culture. U of Michigan P, 2000. Baron, Sabrina Alcorn et al., editors. Agent of Change: Print Culture Studies after Elizabeth L. Eisenstein. U of               Massachusetts P /Center for the Book, Library of Congress, 2007.

The title of a story, poem or essay in a collection, as part of a larger whole, is placed in quotation marks . Dewar, James A., and Peng Hwa Ang. "The Cultural Consequences of Printing and the Internet." Agent of Change: Print             Culture Studies after Elizabeth L. Eisenstein. U of Massachusetts P /Center for the Book, Library of Congress,             2007, pp. 365-77. 

Independent work in a collection When a work that is normally independent (such as a novel or play) appears in a collection, the work's title remains in italics. Euripides. The Trojan Women . Ten Plays, translated by Paul Roche, New American Library, 1998, pp. 457-512.

The title of a periodical (journal, magazine, or newspaper) is in italics and the title of the article is in quotation marks. Goldman, Anne. "Questions of Transport: Reading Primo Levi Reading Dante." The Georgia Review, vol. 64, no. 1, 2010           pp. 69-88. Note: This rule applies to all media forms such as the title of a television series, an episode in a television series, a song or piece of music in an album, a posting or article on a web page. See examples below. Television series Buffy the Vampire Slayer . Created by Joss Whedon, performance by Sarah Michelle Gellar, Mutant Enemy, 1997-2003. Episode in a television series "Hush." Buffy the Vampire Slayer , created by Joss Whedon, performance by Sarah           Michelle Gellar, season 4, episode 10, Mutant Enemy, 1997-2003. Web site Hollmichel, Stefanie. So Many Books . 2003-13, somanybooksbkog.com Note: When giving a URL, omit http and https. Posting of an article on a web site Hollmichel, Stefanie. "The Reading Brain: Differences Between Digital and Print."           So Many Books, 25 April 2013, somanybooksblog.com/2013/04/25/the-reading-brain-differences-between-digital-           and-print/. A song or piece of music in an album Beyonce. "Pretty Hurts." Beyonce , Parkwood Entertainment, 2013,           www.beyonce.com/album/beyonce/?media_view=songs.

Untitled Source In the place of the title, provide a generic description of the source without italics or quotation marks. Capitalize the first word in the title and any proper nouns in it. Mackintosh, Charles Rennie. Chair of Stained Oak. 1897-1900, Victoria and Albert Museum, London.

Comment or review of a title in an online forum Jeane. Comment on "The Reading Brain: Differences Between Digital and Print." So Many Books, 25 Apr. 2013,            10:30 p.m., somanybooksblog.com/2013/04/25/the-reading-brain-differences-between-digital-and-            print/#comment-83030

Review of a title in an online forum Mackin, Joseph. Review of The Pleasures of Reading of an age of Distraction , by Alan Jacobs. New York Journal of Books, 2 June 2011, www.nyjournalofbooks.com/book-review/            pleasures-reading-age-distraction.

Tweet Reproduce the full text without changing anything and enclose within quotation marks. @persiankiwi."We have report of large street battles in east and west of Tehran now. - #Iranelection." Twitter ,            23 June 2009, 11:15 a.m., twitter.com/persianwiki/status/2298106072.

E-mail message Use subject as the title. Subject is enclosed in quotation marks. Boyle, Anthony T. "Re: Utopia." Received by Daniel J. Cayhill, 21 June 1997.

Introduction, Preface, Foreword, or Afterword Capitalize the term in the works cited list but do not italicize or enclose in quotation marks. The term need not be capitalized in in-text discussion. Felstiner, John. Preface. Selected Poems and Prose of Paul Celan , by Paul Celan, translated by Felstiner              W.W. Norton, 2001, pp.xix-xxxvi.

Translations of Titles Place translations of titles for foreign works in square brackets in the works cited list. The translation appears next to the title.

Shortened titles The first time a title is mentioned in your work, it should appear in full. If the title is repeated in the work, it can be shortened to a familiar one (e.g., Skylark for Ode to a Skylark).

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How to Write Book Titles in Essays: APA, MLA, Chicago Styles

It’s your practical and up-to-point guide on how to write a book title in an essay. You’ll get the formatting rules and examples for citing book and author names in academic papers.

We’ve covered the top three citation styles: APA, Chicago, and MLA.

How to Write the Title of a Book in an Essay

First, remember the general rules of citing book names in academic works.

Here’s how to cite books in essays :

  • Use capitalization. Every word of a book’s name goes in the title case, except prepositions, articles, and coordinating conjunctions.
  • Use italics for longer and independent works. Use double quotations for shorter ones (poems, articles, book chapters, or play acts and scenes).
  • Use single quotations for a book’s title within another title. (When citing monographs about literary works, for example.) 

While capitalization rules depend on the citation style, some general tips have a place to be. Please, no capitalization for:

  • Articles: a, the (unless the book title begins with it)
  • Coordinating conjunctions and prepositions: of, and, or, but, for, to, nor, in, so (unless the book title begins or ends with it)

Subordinating conjunctions (although, unless, because, if) go in capital letters.

How to Write a Book Title in an Essay: APA

APA (American Psychological Association) is the most popular style for citing academic works. It’s common for the social sciences like Education, Psychology, Sociology, and others. The current edition: 7th (2019).

Book titles in APA stand for:

  • Italics. (If a book name includes any punctuation, italicize it too.)
  • Capitalization. (Capitalize all words longer than four letters , regardless of the part of speech. Also, use capital letters for two-part words and those coming after a dash or a colon.)
  • Double quotations instead of italics. (When citing a short work like an article or a poem; when citing a book chapter or when the book is a part of an anthology.)

For example: 

The Lord of the Rings but “The Fellowship of the Ring” (The latter is part of the trilogy.)

Related: How to Cite a Movie in APA Format

How to Write the Name of a Book in an Essay: Chicago

The Chicago Manual of Style is a guide by the University of Chicago. It’s common for fields like History, Fine Arts, and Business. The current edition: 17th (2017).

How to format book titles in Chicago:

  • Italicize longer and independent works; put shorter ones in double quotations.
  • Use italics for punctuation within a title.
  • Capitalize all words except articles (a, the) and ALL prepositions or conjunctions (regardless of length).

For example:

In George Orwell’s 1984 , the author presents a dystopian society characterized by pervasive government surveillance and the suppression of individual freedom. The harrowing events in “Chapter 2,” where Winston Smith begins to rebel against the Party by starting a forbidden diary, mark a pivotal moment in the novel’s exploration of resistance against totalitarianism.

The style resembles the MLA format, but it’s flexible, allowing you to “break the rules if necessary.”

How to Write a Book Title in an Essay: MLA

MLA format stands for the Modern Language Association. It’s common for humanities like Literature, Culture, Linguistics, etc. The current edition: 8th (2016). 

How to format books in MLA:

  • Italicize all words, including punctuation and those of two parts or going after colons and hyphens.
  • Capitalize all words except articles (a, the) , prepositions, and short conjunctions within a book title.
  • Use double quotations instead of italics when writing a book chapter or a part of a book series.

In Little Women , Beth March dies in Chapter 40, “The Valley of the Shadow.”

Formatting Book Author Names in Papers

Use the author’s full name (first and last) to format it in your essay for proper credit.

If a book has two authors, use both last names and initials. For works with three or more authors, use the last name of the first one and add “et all.”

No need to italicize author names in papers.

Why Properly Cite Book Titles in Essays

The short answer:

You won’t get a high grade for an essay. Formatting blunders count as mistakes.

The longer answer:

  • You prove writing skills and an understanding of the rules in academia.
  • Your papers maintain consistency. It’s critical to stick to criteria to prevent confusion. The consistent format for book headings also serves to better scannability and readability.
  • You learn to cite different types of references for your future projects.

Do you italicize book titles?

Yes, you put book titles in italics. Please italicize long and stand-alone works: books, movies, webpages, reports, or music albums. Shorter works’ titles (articles, essays, poems, songs, or book chapters) come in quotations. (1)

Do you underline book titles?

Underlining book titles is an outdated practice. Some still use it in handwritten essays, but it’s not a must-follow rule. Neither APA nor MLA (or Chicago) mentions underlining book names in academic papers.

How to use book title capitalization in texts?

Capitalize every word in a book’s title. Exceptions are articles (a, the), prepositions, and short (three or fewer letters) conjunctions in mid-titles.

Are books italicized in all formatting styles?

Yes, book titles come in italics in all styles: APA, MLA, and Chicago. When citing book chapters or a book as a part of a series, use quotation marks instead.

How to write a book author in an essay?

Use the author’s full name when citing their book in your papers. For works with several authors, mention their last names and initials. Unlike book titles, author names come in standard formatting with no italics.

References:

  • https://english.csuci.edu/resources/essay-writing-essentials.htm
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MLA Style Guide, 7th Edition: Titles

  • About In-text Citations
  • In-text Examples
  • How to Paraphrase and Quote
  • What to Include
  • Editors, Translators, etc.
  • Publication Date
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  • Work with No Author
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  • Multi-Volume Works
  • Journal Article
  • Newspaper Article
  • Magazine Article
  • Government Publication
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  • Other Common Sources
  • Formatting Your Paper
  • Formatting Your 'Works Cited' List
  • Annotated Bibliography

General Rules for Titles in Works Cited List (in progress)

In general, the title of a work is taken from the title page of the publication. Refer to section 3.6.4 of the MLA Manual for more about titles and quotations within titles. Section 3.6.5 discusses exceptions to the rules.

  • Rules for capitalizing are strict. Capitalize all principal words (nouns, verbs, adjectives, etc.). Do not capitalize articles, prepostions, or conjunctions when they fall in the middle of a title.
  • Separate a subtitle with a colon and a space.
  • Italicize titles of larger works like books, periodicals, databases, and Web sites.
  • Use quotation marks for titles published in larger works like articles, essays, chapters, poems, Web pages, songs, and speeches.

Book titles

Book titles are italicized.

  • Writing Matters: A Handbook for Writing and Research (book)
  • Their Eyes Were Watching God
  • All the Pretty Horses

Chapter title in a book or anthology

The book title is  italicized ; the title of the article or essay is enclosed in quotations.

Henderson, Carol E. "Refiguring the Flesh: The Word, the Body, and the Rituals of Being Loved in Beloved and Go Tell It on the Mountain ." Critical Insights: Toni Morrison . Ed. Solomon O. Iyasere and Marla W. Iyasere. Pasadena: Salem P, 2010. Print.

Beloved and Go Tell It on the Mountain (book titles) remain italicized in the article title.

Journals and Magazines

The title of the periodical (journal, magazine, or newspaper) is italicized. The title of the article or work is enclosed in quotations.

Danport, Sandra. " A Study of Malawian Households." Journal of Developing Areas ...

Gardiner, Andy. "Stanford Could Lose QB, Coach." USA Today ...

The title of the periodical (journal, magazine, or newspaper) is italicized. The title of the article or work is enclosed in quotations. Omit any introductory article in the newspaper title for English-language newspapers ( Palm Beach Post, not The Palm Beach Post ). Retain the article in non-English language newspapers ( Le monde ).

The title of the work is italicized if the work is independent. The title of the work is enclosed in quotation marks if it is part of a larger work. The title of the overall Web site is italicized if distinct from the the title of the work.

Park, Madison. "How Does a Baby Get To Be Obese." CNN.com ....

Salda, Michael N., ed. The Cinderella Project ...

  • << Previous: Publication Date
  • Next: Editions >>
  • Last Updated: Dec 11, 2020 4:39 PM
  • URL: https://irsc.libguides.com/mla7

how do you quote a novel title in an essay

how do you quote a novel title in an essay

How Do You Write the Title of a Book in MLA Style?

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Have you read “ Italics and Underlining: Titles of Books ,” an article we published on TheWordCounter.com in May? 

Take a look at the previous sentence. In it, we’ve made use of the Modern Language Association’s guidelines for writing titles. Because the article is a part of a whole, meaning it’s a small part of a larger website , its title should be put in quotation marks. The larger work, the website, must be italicized. 

To take a step back, it’s important to understand that many different style guides exist, and they all give advice about how to format your writing, address grammar concerns, and provide information about the source material you use. Within the context of academic writing, often a teacher will give an assignment and specify which style guide you should use. Similarly—if you’re planning to publish your writing—journals, publishing companies, and editors may have strong preferences about formatting. At other times, you may be able to select a style guide based on your own preferences. 

For the purpose of this article, let’s assume that you’ve been assigned (or have chosen to write) a short essay in MLA format. If that’s the case, what do you need to know about writing titles?

how do you quote a novel title in an essay

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Works Cited

To begin, you’ll need to include a Works Cited section for your essay, as long as you have source material that you’re planning to quote or paraphrase. Let’s begin by looking at a standard citation for a book in MLA format. 

Last Name, First Name. Title of Book . Publisher, Publication Date. 

Notice that the title of the book is italicized. 

You would also use italics for other forms of media cited in their entirety: 

  • News publications
  • Anthologies

When you write the title, remember that the rules for capitalizing can be tricky. For MLA, title case requires that you capitalize the first word of the title and any subtitles, capitalize all principal words (nouns, verbs, adjectives, adverbs, and pronouns), and capitalize all the words that contain four letters or more. If you use a hyphenated word, be sure to capitalize the second part that comes after the hyphen. When the title has a subtitle, be sure to include a colon and a space between the main title and the subtitle. 

To review, here are a few fictional titles, along with the proper title case for MLA style:

  • New York in the Spring: A Guide to Snacking
  • Hot-Headedness and Anger From a Toddler’s Perspective
  • The Unofficial Grammar Bible

how do you quote a novel title in an essay

In-Text Citations

For an in-text citation, you would simply follow your quotation or paraphrase with a parenthetical notation. Provide the reader with the author’s last name and the page number. This way, if the reader wants to review the source material that you used, he or she can find the book in the Works Cited section of your essay, and then look at the referenced page directly. 

When you use a parenthetical citation in this manner, you do not necessarily need to write the title of the book in your prose. That said, it is common to include the title of the book in your research paper or essay, especially the first time you refer to the book, in order to provide additional context for the quotation or paraphrase. If you include the author’s name in your prose, there is no need to repeat it in the in-text citation. 

Here are examples of both styles of in-text citation. 

  • As Rick Hawthorne explains in Coordinating Conjunctions for Fun , “Grammar can be amazing” (75).
  • According to a prominent linguistics professor, “Grammar can be amazing” (Hawthorne 75). 

In the examples above, you can see that including the title of the book may add context, but it is not necessary when you provide the in-text citation. If you choose to include the title, you should use the same title case and formatting that you use in the Works Cited section of your paper. 

What Titles Need Quotation Marks?

As a general rule, the titles that require quotation marks involve a partial work. For example, a chapter in a book only makes up part of a larger work. 

Based on the MLA handbook, we’ve created a list of media that fits into the “part of a whole” classification. Next to those titles, we’ve listed examples of the complete works, written in all capital letters. 

  • Book chapters | BOOK TITLE
  • Web pages | WEBSITE NAME
  • News, magazine, and journal articles | NEWSPAPER, MAGAZINE, or JOURNAL TITLE
  • TV episodes | TV SHOW TITLE
  • Songs | ALBUM TITLE
  • Short stories | ANTHOLOGY TITLE
  • Poems | ANTHOLOGY TITLE
  • Online videos | WEBSITE NAME

Of the items in the list above, the first set of titles should be written within a pair of quotation marks. The capitalized set of titles should be written with italics. 

Special Circumstances

There are a few situations that necessitate special rules. 

  • When a work has no author, the title should be used in the place of the author’s last name for the in-text citation. Do not include subtitles in the in-text citation. If the full title is long, you may abbreviate it by dropping articles and prepositions, but you must maintain the first word as it’s alphabetized in your Works Cited. 
  • When you quote or paraphrase from a chapter in an anthology or reference book, be sure to include the chapter title in your Works Cited list, between the author’s name and the name of the full work. 
  • Add the English translation of a foreign-language title in brackets in your Works Cited, and add it in parentheses in your prose.
  •  Although the following words and phrases describe parts of a work, they should not be confused with unique titles: preface, introduction, works cited, appendix, scene, stanza, chapter, bibliography, act, index. Since they are not titles, section names do not need to be put in quotations. 
  • Musical compositions, laws, and religious scripture do not receive the same treatment as other titles. When in doubt, refer to the Modern Language Association for special exceptions. 
  • When you come across a title within a title, use quotation marks or italics as normal. Quotes within quotes employ single quotes, and italics within italics revert back to non-italicized text. For example, if you have the title of a poem that appears within the title of a chapter, you would use single quotation marks within double quotation marks: “Understanding Whitman’s ‘Song of Myself'”. 
  • For a title that ends in a question mark, there’s no need to add a colon before the subtitle. 
  • According to the 8th edition of the MLA guidelines, you no longer need to include the city of publication for books published after 1900. For an older book, your citation should include that information.
  • https://irsc.libguides.com/mla/intextexamples#
  • https://www.scribbr.com/mla/titles/
  • https://owl.purdue.edu/owl/research_and_citation/mla_style/mla_formatting_and_style_guide/mla_general_format.html
  • https://www.mla.org/MLA-Style
  • ​ https://libguides.css.edu/c.php?g=41682&p=265033

mm

Kari Lisa Johnson

I’m an award-winning playwright with a penchant for wordplay. After earning a perfect score on the Writing SAT, I worked my way through Brown University by moonlighting as a Kaplan Test Prep tutor. I received a BA with honors in Literary Arts (Playwriting)—which gave me the opportunity to study under Pulitzer Prize-winner Paula Vogel. In my previous roles as new media producer with Rosetta Stone, director of marketing for global ventures with The Juilliard School, and vice president of digital strategy with Up & Coming Media, I helped develop the voice for international brands. From my home office in Maui, Hawaii, I currently work on freelance and ghostwriting projects.

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How to Write a Book Title and Author in an Essay?

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So, you’re writing an essay, and you’re referencing a book. But how on earth do you write and cite the title and the author’s name correctly?

Do you use quotation marks? Italics? Punctuation? And what about capitalization?

The answer is a little more complicated than you might think. It all depends on the style of essay you’re writing, but once you’ve familiarized yourself with the rules for each one, it’s easy to mention and cite any book title and author’s name correctly, so you can get top marks from your instructor, each and every time.

Table of Contents

The Correct Way to Write a Book’s Title And Author in an Essay

In this post, we’ll look at the three most common essay formats used in the US and learn how to properly display book titles and author names in each one.

The Most Popular Essay Formats

The three most commonly used essay formats found in schools, universities, and higher education institutions across America are known as APA, MLA, and Chicago style.

The format your professor assigns will depend on the subject matter, the department, the purpose of the essay, and the instructor’s individual preferences.

APA stands for the American Psychological Association. This is the go-to format for scientific essays, including many social and behavioural sciences.

MLA stands for Modern Language Association and is the most frequently used format in humanities and liberal arts subjects, such as literature and history.

Chicago format, also known as Turabian after its creator, Kate L. Turabian, is commonly used in the publishing world and also in subjects such as anthropology, history, and selected social sciences.

Why is Using The Correct Format so Important?

The short answer is that you’ll receive a lower grade if you don’t.

But of course, there are many good reasons why proper formatting is important when writing papers and essays.

1. Consistency

Formats like APA, MLA, and Chicago provide a strict set of criteria to stick to throughout an essay, ensuring consistency.

Consistency avoids confusion for the reader and helps them to quickly and easily identify what the writer is trying to say.

2. References And Research

Sticking with one style or format makes it easier for readers to check citations and conduct further research into the chosen topic.

3. Demonstrating Understanding

In academic settings, adhering to a particular style guide, such as APA, MLA, or Chicago, demonstrates your understanding of the rules and principles of written material within that field.

This shows that you don’t just understand the subject; you also know how to write about it.

4. Preparation For Future Studies

Suppose you’re a high school student or a college undergrad, familiarizing yourself with the basic principles of essay formatting. In that case, it is a great way to prepare yourself for your future academic pursuits, especially if you plan to progress onto a graduate or postgraduate program.

How to Write a Book’s Title in The Main Body of an APA Style Essay?

Here are the key rules to remember when writing book titles in the main body of an APA-style essay:

  • Use quotation marks (not italics) on either side of the book’s title (with the exception of the holy texts like the Bible and reference works like dictionaries and almanacs).
  • The first word of the title should be capitalized.
  • All words and terms containing more than four letters or symbols should be capitalized.
  • Any two-part words containing a hyphen should be capitalized.
  • Words placed directly after a colon or dash should also be capitalized.

For example, “Slaughterhouse-Five”

How to Write a Book’s Title in The Main Body of an MLA or Chicago Style Essay?

MLA and Chicago-style essays use similar rules when it comes to mentioning book titles in the main body of an essay. Here are the key things to remember when using either of these formats:

  • The book’s title should be displayed in italics (not quotation marks), with the exception of holy texts like the Bible.
  • If the title contains punctuation, this should be italicized, too.
  • All verbs, nouns, and adjectives should be capitalized.
  • If you’re referring to a chapter or mentioning a book alongside the series it belongs to, use quotation marks, not italics.

For example,

O ne Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest by Ken Kesey, or “A Clash of Kings” from A Song of Ice and Fire by George R.R. Martin

1. Avoid Capitalizing Minor Words

Unless they appear as the first word in a title, the following words should be displayed in lowercase.

  • Prepositions , such as on, in, at, and from.
  • Articles , such as the, a, and an.
  • Coordinating conjunctions , such as so, and, yet, but, and for.

This might sound a little complex at first, but it’s pretty simple and intuitive once you get the hang of it.

99% of the time, the book’s title as it is displayed on the front cover is correct for both MLA and Chicago-style essays.

How to Write a Book’s Title in The Main Body of a Handwritten Essay?

Handwritten essays used to be the norm, but these days, they’re most definitely the exception.

Still, there may be some instances where you’re asked to handwrite an essay rather than type it, in which case, you should follow the rules below.

1. Capitalization

The capitalization rules for writing book titles in the main body of a handwritten essay are the same as with typed essays.

So, if you’re handwriting an APA-style essay, make sure to capitalize the first letter of the first word in the title and do the same for every word containing more than four letters.

And when handwriting an MLA or Chicago-style essay, capitalize the first letter of the first word of the title and do the same for every word except for articles, prepositions, or coordinating conjunctions.

2. Underlining

No matter the format, book titles should always be underlined when handwriting an essay

  • Underline the complete title, including any words that come after a colon or dash
  • Underline any punctuation that appears in the book’s title
  • Avoid underlining each word separately; always use one continuous line
  • Make your line as straight as possible by using a ruler or following the line on the paper

How to Cite a Book And its Author in a References or Works Cited Page?

So, now you know how to write the title of a book mentioned in the body of an essay.

But what do you do when you need to cite a book and its author in your references or works cited page?

To keep it simple, I’ll use Lucy Maud Montgomery’s 1908 classic children’s novel , Anne of Green Gables, as an example for each essay style.

1. Book Citations in APA Style

Here’s the proper format for citing authors and their book titles in APA:

Last Name, First Names. (Year the book was published). Book title .

For example, Montgomery, Lucy Maud. (1908). Anne of Green Gables.

2. Book Citations in MLA Style

Here’s the proper format for citing authors and their book titles in MLA:

Last Name, First Names. Book title . City of Publication, Publisher, Year the book was published.

Note: You only need to include the city of publication if the book was published before 1900 or if the publisher is not based in the US.

For example, Montgomery, Lucy Maud. Anne of Green Gables. L.C. Page & Co., 1908.

3. Book Citations in Chicago Style

Here’s the proper format for citing authors and their book titles in Chicago style:

Last Name, First Names. Book Title: Subtitle . City of publication: Publisher, Year the book was published.

Note: Just like with MLA style, you only need to include the city of publication if the book was published before 1900 or if the publisher is not based in the US.

For example, Montgomery, Lucy Maud. Anne of Green Gables . L.C. Page & Co., 1908.

4. Book Citations in a Hand Written Essay

If you’re handwriting an essay, you’ll no doubt be handwriting your references or works cited page, too.

In this case, you should still follow the appropriate formatting rules above in relation to the chosen essay style.

But where a title appears in italics in a printed essay, in a handwritten essay, it should be neatly underlined instead.

Missing Information

If you’ve searched high and low for a book’s publisher, publication date, or the city in which it was published, but you still can’t find the information, it’s generally acceptable to leave it out.

Essay writing is a skill that takes practice, and at first, the rules and principles of the different formats can seem complex. This is especially true when you’re writing about books and their authors or citing other people’s work.

But hopefully, this post has helped explain the structures used in each of the most commonly used formats so that next time you write an essay, you can be confident that you’re doing it right.

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The Write Practice

How to Write a Book Title in MLA Formatting

by Joe Bunting | 0 comments

You're writing a paper for school and suddenly you stop in the middle of the sentence. You have to write a book title, but you don't how to format it. How do you format a book title in MLA style? Good news: you're in the write place (sorry, I had to).

In this post, we'll talk about MLA style and formatting, whether it's appropriate for your project, and most importantly, how to write a book title in MLA style.

How to Write a Book Title in MLA Formatting

What Is MLA?

MLA stands for Modern Language Association, a society primarily based in the United States but with international standing, that has a mission to “strengthen the study and teaching of language and literature”. Founded in the late 1800s by an American novelist and professor, MLA publishes a set of resources used by students and teachers, including the MLA Handbook for Writers of Research Papers .

The MLA handbook is one of the main style manuals for students and scholars in the world, especially for anyone studying literature, film, or theater.

Should You Format Based on MLA Style?

If you're writing a paper for a class in literature, theater, or film, absolutely use MLA style. Outside of that, it depends. Here are the most frequent style guides associated with various disciplines:

  • Literature, Film, Theater:   MLA
  • Psychology:   APA
  • Science (Physics, Biology, Chemistry): CSE or APA
  • Journalism:   AP
  • Mathematics:   AMA
  • Publishing:   Chicago

You can find a full list of international style guides here .

Now that you know if you should be using MLA style, how do you format a book title with it?

How to Format a Book Title in MLA Style: Example

In MLA style, book titles are italicized, as so:

Henry Thorough argues in Walden  that the best life is lived in deliberate simplicity so as to discover what life truly is about.

In fact, most style guides, including MLA and   Chicago style, require book titles to be italicized , not underlined.

If the book title has a subtitle, the subtitle should be italicized as well and separated by a colon to be formatted correctly for MLA style, as in:

Natural History of the Intellect: the last lectures of Ralph Waldo Emerson

Should You Underline Book Titles in MLA Style?

If you are using MLA style, you should not underline book titles. Instead, italicize the titles.

However, AP style, the guide used by journalists, suggests putting titles in quotation marks, not italicization.

Still, I wouldn't recommend underlining a book's title. In fact, I couldn't find a single style guide that requires book titles to be underlined, but if you know of one that does, let me know in the comments!

Which style guide do you use most? MLA? Chicago? APA? AP? Or do you just write based on your own rules?!  Let me know in the comments .

Let's cement this formatting lesson in our minds by putting it to use right away with the following writing exercise .

What are your favorite books of all time? Write about what you love about them and why they are your favorites for fifteen minutes . Make sure to use the correct formatting for each title!

When your time is up, post your practice in the comments section . And if you post, please be sure to read a few practices by other writers and share your feedback with them.

Happy writing!

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Joe Bunting

Joe Bunting is an author and the leader of The Write Practice community. He is also the author of the new book Crowdsourcing Paris , a real life adventure story set in France. It was a #1 New Release on Amazon. Follow him on Instagram (@jhbunting).

Want best-seller coaching? Book Joe here.

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How To Write Book Titles The Proper Way: A Complete Guide For Writers

  • February 10, 2022

Book titles within essays or papers can be tricky. There are specific rules that are given for how to include a book title in a way that sets it apart from the content of your writing given by the Modern Language Association. However, as with many other things in life, there are exceptions to the rules. This article will guide you through the rules of the writing style guides so that you can include a book’s title in your paper or essay correctly.

How to write book titles:

Style guides and book titles.

When it comes to book titles within text, there are a few different style guides that have rules you can follow, depending on your writing type. The three types that you will encounter most often are; MLA style, Chicago manual of style, and APA. A writing instructor will usually tell you what style guide you are expected to use for a particular essay or paper.

MLA Style Guide

The MLA handbook states that you should always italicize book titles when styling book titles within your text. The exception to this rule are religious texts. You would not italicize the Holy Bible or the sacred books or titles of other religions. Note the following example.

Pam had stayed most of the summer indoors, re-reading her favorite book series. She was already up to  Harry Potter and the Philosopher’s Stone , and she didn’t regret not being more active or going outside.

In the above example, the book title is italicized. Fiction titles and nonfiction titles alike must be in italics when within the text.

Series Titles in MLA

In the above example, a book from a series was used. But what if the text had not specified which book from the series Pam was reading? Would it still need to be in italics? The answer is: in this case, yes. In other cases, sometimes.

It’s really not as confusing as it seems. When you are talking about a book series but don’t want or need to include the complete series titles for the purposes of your work, you only have to put words in italics that also appear in the book titles. So, because  Harry Potter  is part of the title of all of the books in the series, you would italicize his name every time you mention the book.

However, if you were talking about Katniss Everdeen, you would not have to do this, as the book series she is featured in doesn’t use her name in the titles of  The Hunger Games  series. The same would be true of books like the Nancy Drew books.

Quotation Marks

There are instances in which titles should be placed inside of quotation marks within a paper or essay. This is done when you cite the titles of poems , a chapter title, short stories, articles, or blogs.

How To Write Book Titles

So, for example, if you were to write a paper that featured a poem from a book, you would put the book title in italics and the poems cited in quotation marks.

An example of an enduring love poem is “Annabel Lee” from  The Complete Tales and Poems of Edgar Allan Poe. 

Chapter Title

Another time that quotation marks should be used is when using the title of a chapter. If you are citing a specific chapter of a book, you would enclose the title of the chapter in quotation marks, and the title of the book should be in italics.

The desperation and sadness of a man on death row can be seen in the “Wild Wind Blowing” chapter of Norman Mailer’s  The Executioner’s Song. 

Short Stories

Short stories are another case. Much like the title of a chapter or poem, in which the title is placed in quotation marks, while the title of the book or collection it is found in is italics. The same can be said for sections, stories, or chapters cited within a literary journal.

Stepping away from his norm of horror and gore, Stephen King writes of trust, love, and regret in his story “The Last Rung on the Ladder,” which can be found in his short story collection  Night Shift. 

Punctuation Marks

If you are citing a story or title that includes question marks, you need to make sure to italicize the question mark when citing. Keep all punctuation, such as a question mark, comma, ellipses, colon, or exclamation mark, as it is in the original individual books.

If you want a funny and irreverent read, you’ve got to try  Are You There, Vodka? It’s Me, Chelsea.  Chelsea Handler has done a phenomenal job of being vulgar, relatable, and explaining life from her viewpoint in this hilarious and memorable book.

The Digital Age: Are Book Titles Underlined Anymore?

MLA style used to dictate that a book title should either be in italics or underlined. However, that is no longer the case. As computers started to take over as the major tool used in writing, it became unpopular to underline book titles. Therefore, this rule was dropped from the style guides.

However, it should be mentioned that when handwriting an essay or research paper, many instructors prefer that you underline book titles, as it’s relatively difficult to handwrite italics. If you are in a writing course or a class that is heavy on handwritten work, be sure to ask your instructor or teacher which method they prefer for citing a book title.

How To Write Book Titles

How to Come Up with Book Title Ideas

Now that quotation marks, italics, and style guides have been discussed, let’s move on to how you can come up with your own book title. If you’d like a title for your book that sounds interesting and will get a reader’s attention, you may find this article helpful.

Coming up with a good title for your book is a challenging yet essential marketing decision . The right title can make your target audience choose your new book off of the shelf instead of another writer’s work. Your book cover and your book title are quite possibly the most important marketing decisions you will make.

How to Choose a Good Book Title

Certain criteria should be met if you want to have a good book title , and there are specific steps involved in getting there. You may have assumed up until now that titles of books were just spur of the moment decisions made by authors or publishers, but a lot of work goes into writing good titles.

Grab the Reader’s Attention

As a general rule, you want your reader to remember your title and to sound interesting, even without the reader having seen the cover. There are several ways to do this. You can be a little dark with your title, be controversial, provoke the reader, or even be funny.

There are many examples of such works that use memorable and attention-seeking titles. The following are some different titles that are effective and would most likely provoke a reader to grab them from a shelf for closer inspection.

  • Burn After Writing (Sharon Jones)
  • Love in the Time of Cholera (Gabriel Garcia Marquez)
  • Is Everyone Hanging Out Without Me? (Mindy Kaling)
  • Are You There, Vodka? It’s Me, Chelsea (Chelsea Handler)
  • The Devil Wears Prada (Lauren Weisberger)
  • Chicken Soup for the Soul (various authors)
  • God Bless You, Dr. Kevorkian (Kurt Vonnegut)

Shorter Titles

If your full title for your book is long, you may end up boring a reader or creating a situation where a reader tries to remember the title of your book, but it’s too long and ends up getting it confused with another book. Although you should always do your best to make sure that there aren’t books by other authors that share a title or have a title similar to your book (more on that in a minute), you don’t want a person to get confused and get the wrong book instead.

Research Your Title Ideas

It’s a good idea to take the titles you have considered for your book and make a list. Then, do your homework. You can use tools like Google Adwords to test out your title to see if there are others like it, or you can simply use any search engine and plug your title ideas into the search bar and see what similar or exact titles of the same words pop up.

Readers are generally busy people. They don’t have the time or the energy to ensure that writers get a title right. They’ll look for the book they are interested in, and if it proves to be too difficult, or if there are other books written that have the same title, they’ll move on to something else.

A writer really has to make sure that they have a title that isn’t going to be ignored, is interesting, isn’t too long, and isn’t too similar to other works.

The same goes for titles of short works within a larger body of work. Short works, like poems or stories, need to have unique titles as well when included in a larger body of work, such as a collection. If stories are similar in nature, be sure to title them differently so that readers will be able to tell them apart, as well.

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How to Write a Book Title in an Essay (MLA, APA etc.)

Formatting your essay correctly ensures that you get full recognition for the hard work you put into it. Wondering what to do? There are two scenarios that lead you to the question of "how to write a book title in an essay":

  • You have not been required to use a particular style guide, in which case consistency remains important.
  • You have been instructed to use a particular style guide. You now simply need to ensure that you are familiar with its rules.

Regardless of which of these scenarios holds true for you, this guide is here to help.

How to Write a Book Title in an Essay

Many style manuals call on writers use title case and italics to format a book title. Title case rules vary slightly from one style guide to the next, but generally capitalize all important words — nouns, pronouns, verbs, and adverbs. Conjunctions and prepositions are not capitalized unless they are very long (generally more than four letters) or they appear at the beginning or end of a book title.

Writers who are not required to work with a specific style manual can't go wrong if they stick to this style. Some examples would be:

  • To Kill a Mockingbird by Harper Lee
  • The Gift of Fear and Other Survival Signals That Protect us From Violence by Gavin de Becker
  • The Cat With a Feathery Tail and Other Stories by Enid Blyton

If, on the other hand, you're required to use a style guide, it will likely be one of these:

  • MLA, commonly used in disciplines relating to literature and social sciences.
  • APA, commonly used in psychology and other sciences.
  • Chicago, often used in the publishing industry.
  • Harvard style, commonly used in philosophy and social sciences.

These are certainly not the only "big players" in the style guide world, but they're ones it's good to be familiar with. There is overlap between these styles, but there are also major differences — so knowing one definitely does not mean you know the others, too.

Guidelines for Writing a Book Title in an Essay

Looking for a short and sharp answer, so you can get on with the rest of your essay? This is it.

This quick guide will help you reference the book title of your choosing in the body of your essay, but what about your Works Cited pages? Each style guide offers different rules, and we'll use the same book as an example to illustrate the differences.

  • MLA uses the following format: Author Last Name, First Name. Title of Book . City of Publication, Publisher, Publication Year. Example: Card, Orson Scott. Ender's Game. Tor Books, 1985. (You only have to detail the city of publication if the book was published before 1900, the publisher has offices in many localities, or the publisher is not known in the US.)
  • APA uses the following format: Author Last Name, First Name. (Year of Publication). Title of book. Example: Card, Orson Scott. (1985). Ender's game.
  • Chicago style uses the following format: Author Last Name, First Name. Book Title: Subtitle . Place of publication: Publisher, Year. Example: Card, Orson Scott. Ender's Game . Tor Books, 1985.
  • Harvard uses the following format: Author Last Name, First Initial. (Publication Year). Title . ed. City: Publisher. Example: Card, O. (1985). Ender's Game. Tor Books.

If, after researching, you cannot find relevant information about publication years, publishers, or the city in which a book was published, you may omit it. For a full guide, it is always best to have a physical copy of the latest edition of the style manual you are using. You can, however, get by without this if you need to.

Should you still not know what to do, it will be helpful for you to know that you can "generate" citations for a particular style manual with the help of online tools like Cite Me . These are not always accurate, so if you decide to use one, always check the citation manually.

Why Is Proper Formatting Important?

All of the well-known style manuals ultimately serve the very same set of purposes, although they were each developed for a particular niche. The goals of these style manuals are both explicit and implicit:

  • Following a style guide ensures consistency throughout a document, in this case an essay.
  • Consistency ensures that reader's understand precisely what the writer is talking about, without exerting any effort on figuring that out. Clarity is especially important in academic writing.
  • By using a style guide within a certain discipline, you show that you understand the rules within that discipline. This adds credibility to your voice as a writer. You have done your homework, have ideally bought the style manual, and are part of the "in group".
  • Sticking to a certain style guide makes it easier for relevant parties to check your references, which they can then use to perform further research.

Students are increasingly asked to refer to style guides at all levels, including in high school. In this case, formatting your essay correctly, in accordance with the right style manual, serves two additional purposes:

  • You'll lose points if you don't do it right, offering you an additional reason to do your research.
  • Getting used to these formats prepares you for further education. If you are in high school, it prepares you for college-level writing. If you are an undergraduate student, it prepares you for academic work at the graduate and post-graduate levels.

Can you start an essay with a book title?

Yes, you can start an essay with a book title. This is a valid stylistic choice, but you will always want to consider your introduction carefully.

How do you write a book title in handwriting?

Students sometimes ask whether it is acceptable to underline book titles instead of italicizing them. This practice indeed stems from a time in which most students wrote their essays by hand. Although it has largely fallen out of practice now, you can still underline a book title if you are handwriting your essay.

How do you write a book title and chapter in an essay?

You should mention the chapter title first: "Rat" from Ender's Game by Orson Scott Card. Consult the relevant style manual to ensure you get the formatting right.

Can you shorten a book title in an essay?

Yes, you can. Reference the full title the first time you mention it (for example: Furiously Happy: A Funny Book About Horrible Things ). The next time you mention the book, you may simply refer to Furiously Happy .

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MLA Formatting Quotations

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MLA (Modern Language Association) style is most commonly used to write papers and cite sources within the liberal arts and humanities. This resource, updated to reflect the MLA Handbook (8 th ed.), offers examples for the general format of MLA research papers, in-text citations, endnotes/footnotes, and the Works Cited page.

When you directly quote the works of others in your paper, you will format quotations differently depending on their length. Below are some basic guidelines for incorporating quotations into your paper. Please note that all pages in MLA should be double-spaced .

Short quotations

To indicate short quotations (four typed lines or fewer of prose or three lines of verse) in your text, enclose the quotation within double quotation marks. Provide the author and specific page number (in the case of verse, provide line numbers) in the in-text citation, and include a complete reference on the Works Cited page. Punctuation marks such as periods, commas, and semicolons should appear after the parenthetical citation.

Question marks and exclamation points should appear within the quotation marks if they are a part of the quoted passage, but after the parenthetical citation if they are a part of your text.

For example, when quoting short passages of prose, use the following examples:

When using short (fewer than three lines of verse) quotations from poetry, mark breaks in verse with a slash, ( / ), at the end of each line of verse (a space should precede and follow the slash). If a stanza break occurs during the quotation, use a double slash ( // ).

Long quotations

For quotations that are more than four lines of prose or three lines of verse, place quotations in a free-standing block of text and omit quotation marks. Start the quotation on a new line, with the entire quote indented 1/2   inch  from the left margin while maintaining double-spacing. Your parenthetical citation should come  after the closing punctuation mark . When quoting verse, maintain original line breaks. (You should maintain double-spacing throughout your essay.)

For example, when citing more than four lines of prose, use the following examples :

Nelly Dean treats Heathcliff poorly and dehumanizes him throughout her narration: They entirely refused to have it in bed with them, or even in their room, and I had no more sense, so, I put it on the landing of the stairs, hoping it would be gone on the morrow. By chance, or else attracted by hearing his voice, it crept to Mr. Earnshaw's door, and there he found it on quitting his chamber. Inquiries were made as to how it got there; I was obliged to confess, and in recompense for my cowardice and inhumanity was sent out of the house. (Bronte 78)

When citing long sections of poetry (four lines of verse or more), keep formatting as close to the original as possible.

In his poem "My Papa's Waltz," Theodore Roethke explores his childhood with his father:

The whiskey on your breath Could make a small boy dizzy; But I hung on like death: Such waltzing was not easy. We Romped until the pans Slid from the kitchen shelf; My mother's countenance Could not unfrown itself. (qtd. in Shrodes, Finestone, Shugrue 202)

When citing two or more paragraphs, use block quotation format, even if the passage from the paragraphs is less than four lines. If you cite more than one paragraph, the first line of the second paragraph should be indented an extra 1/4 inch to denote a new paragraph:

In "American Origins of the Writing-across-the-Curriculum Movement," David Russell argues,

Writing has been an issue in American secondary and higher education since papers and examinations came into wide use in the 1870s, eventually driving out formal recitation and oral examination. . . .

From its birth in the late nineteenth century, progressive education has wrestled with the conflict within industrial society between pressure to increase specialization of knowledge and of professional work (upholding disciplinary standards) and pressure to integrate more fully an ever-widening number of citizens into intellectually meaningful activity within mass society (promoting social equity). . . . (3)

Adding or omitting words in quotations

If you add a word or words in a quotation, you should put brackets around the words to indicate that they are not part of the original text:

If you omit a word or words from a quotation, you should indicate the deleted word or words by using ellipses, which are three periods ( . . . ) preceded and followed by a space. For example:

Please note that brackets are not needed around ellipses unless they would add clarity.

When omitting words from poetry quotations, use a standard three-period ellipses; however, when omitting one or more full lines of poetry, space several periods to about the length of a complete line in the poem:

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  • Writing Tips

Formatting Titles in Essays

2-minute read

  • 8th May 2018

Handling your own headings is one thing, but how should you write the titles of other works? You need to mark them out somehow, and you have two standard options: italics or quote marks.

This is especially important in academic writing , as you’ll often have to discuss books and papers written by other people. Here, then, are some guidelines you should follow when formatting titles.

When to Use Italics

You can often spot a title from the capitalisation , but we still format titles to distinguish between different types of source. Titles of longer sources, for example, typically use italics:

how do you quote a novel title in an essay

Here, Kerrang! is italicised because it is the title of a magazine (i.e. a standalone work that is not one part of a larger whole). Other publications and productions that this applies to include:

  • Academic journals
  • Newspapers and magazines
  • Websites and blogs
  • Films and TV shows
  • Radio programmes
  • Plays and other stage shows
  • Book-length poems
  • Paintings and other works of art
  • Music albums

The key here, then, is that italics are used for longer published works .

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When to Use Quote Marks

We use quote marks for the title of anything that doesn’t fit in the list above. Usually, this will be something that is part of a more substantial publication, such as an article from a magazine:

how do you quote a novel title in an essay

In this case, we see both the magazine title and an article title. Using italics on the former and quote marks on the latter makes it immediately obvious which is which. Other cases where quote marks are required include:

  • Chapters from books
  • Academic papers and journal articles
  • Articles from newspapers and magazines
  • Single pages from a website or posts from a blog
  • Individual poems and short stories
  • Single episodes of a TV series
  • Single poems from a collection
  • Songs and other short recordings

In this case, the key is that quote marks are used for shorter works . However, quote marks are also used for unpublished works regardless of length (e.g. a draft manuscript or a PhD dissertation).

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How to Write A BOOK Title In An Essay

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Writing a book title in an essay can be confusing. But it is necessary for the credibility and clarity of the write-up. Plus, each writing style has its own rules for formatting titles. Hence, doing such an activity could be a real pain for the students.

Don’t worry, as you are in the right place! Since this interesting article focuses on guiding you about how to write a book title in an essay accurately. So, read it thoroughly before you search for a professional  paper writing services  provider.

Table of Contents

Understanding Formatting Guidelines

The first step in learning how to write book name in essay is to learn the basics. It means you need to get comfortable with different formatting guidelines. Let’s begin with the style guides.

Different style guides

When writing essays for college , it’s important to know the rules for formatting book titles. The three most popular style guides are MLA, APA, and Chicago.

In  MLA format , you should usually italicize book titles. You can also put them in quotation marks when a type of work demands.

For example, a book title like “To Kill a Mockingbird” would be italicized:  To Kill a Mockingbird .

However, a chapter title within a book would be placed within quotation marks. For example, “The Ewell Family.”

In  APA style , the first word of book titles is capital.

For example, a book title like “The Catcher in the Rye” would be written as The catcher in the rye

Chicago Style

Chicago style demands a book title to be in italics or quotation marks. It is very similar to the MLA style. But Chicago style gives you a bit more leeway to use italics or quotation marks. It’s best to stay consistent with what you pick throughout your essay when using the Chicago style.

Consistency within the Essay

You must be consistent when including the title of a book in an essay. Figure out what style guide you must follow and ensure you stick with it. That means all the book titles you mention should look the same.

For example, if you choose to italicize book titles according to MLA style. Ensure that all book titles in your essay are italicized consistently. Avoid mixing italicization with quotation marks or using different formatting styles within the same essay.

Inconsistency in formatting can confuse readers and undermine the professionalism of your work. Paying attention to detail and maintaining consistency will contribute to your essay’s overall clarity and readability.

Determine the Appropriate Style Guide to Follow

To determine the appropriate style guide to follow for formatting book titles in your essay, consider the following:

Assignment Requirements

See if your teacher or the instructions for the assignment mention a certain style to go by. Stick to that, if they do, to ensure everything is consistent, and you meet the expectations.

Academic Discipline

Your field of study can affect which style guide you should use. For example, humanities and literature students usually use MLA style, while social sciences usually use APA style. It’s important to know what’s typical in your discipline to choose the right guide.

Formatting Book Titles in MLA Style

Humanities and liberal arts disciplines use MLA writing rules. In MLA style, book titles are usually in italics like in APA style. But there can be variations in capitalization and punctuation. Let’s explore each aspect in detail with examples:

In MLA style, book titles are put in italics to make them stand out from the rest of the text.

Titles of shorter works, such as articles or chapters, are enclosed in quotation marks.

Example 1: Italicized Book Title

Fitzgerald, F. Scott. The Great Gatsby .

Example 2: Book Chapter (In Quotation Marks)

Smith, John. “The Art of Persuasion.” Essays on Rhetoric.

Capitalization

In MLA style, follows the title case. It means keep the first letter of each word capital. Capitalize articles, conjunctions, and prepositions only if they are the first or last words in title.

Example 3: Correct Capitalization

Lee, Harper. To Kill a Mockingbird.

Punctuation

In MLA style, there should be no special punctuation like colons or periods between the main title and any subtitles. However, if the book’s title includes a subtitle, a colon should separate it from the main title.

Example 4: Book Title with Subtitle

Gladwell, Malcolm. Outliers: The Story of Success.

Edition and Volume Numbers

To refer to a certain book edition, add the edition number after the book title. If the book is part of a multi-volume work, indicate the volume number after the title as well.

Example 5: Edition and Volume Numbers

Johnson, Mary. Chemistry in Focus. 2nd ed.

Smith, Adam. The Wealth of Nations. Vol. 1.

Translated Titles

If the book you are citing is translated from another language, include the original title and the translator’s name in the citation.

Example 6: Translated Title

Kafka, Franz. The Metamorphosis. Translated by David Wyllie.

It’s important to remember that MLA style is always changing and being updated. So always refer to the latest edition of the MLA Handbook or your institution’s writing guidelines.

Formatting Book Titles in APA Style

Usually the social sciences disciplines use APA (American Psychological Association) style. Let’s look at how you must consider capitalization, punctuation and italics in this writing style.

Just capitalize the first word of any subtitles and proper nouns.

All other words, such as articles (a, an, the), conjunctions (and, but, or), and prepositions (in, on, at), are in lowercase.

Example 1: 

“The Power of Habit: Why We Do What We Do in Life and Business”

In APA style, book titles are italicized to distinguish them from the rest of the text.

Do not italicize titles of shorter works, such as articles or chapters. Just enclose them in quotation marks.

Example 2: Italics

Here’s an example of an italicized book title:

The Catcher in the Rye

In APA style, there should be a colon (:) between the main title and any subtitle.

When citing a book title within the text of your paper, use title case and italicize it.

When including book titles in your reference list, use sentence case and italicize it.

Example 3: Punctuation

Here’s an example of proper punctuation and citation within the text and reference list:

In-text citation

According to Smith (2019),  The Theory of Everything  provides an in-depth analysis of astrophysics.

Reference list citation

Smith, J. (2019).  the theory of everything . Publisher.

Include the edition number in parentheses right after the book title when a book has a specific edition.

If a book is part of a multi-volume work, you can also indicate the volume number after the title.

Example 4: Parenthesis

Here are examples of how to format book titles with edition and volume numbers:

Edition Number

Johnson, M. (2022). Chemistry in Focus (2nd ed.).

Volume Number

Smith, A. (2021). History of the United States (Vol. 3).

Include the translator’s name in square brackets if you cite a translated book. 

Example 5: Translated Thesis 

Here’s an example of how to format a translated book title:

Kundera, M. (1984). The Unbearable Lightness of Being [Original title: Nesnesitelná lehkost bytí].

Translated by M. Henry.

Formatting Book Titles in Chicago Style

The Chicago Manual of Style is mostly used in the humanities and social sciences disciplines. Chicago style follows two systems, namely Author-Date System and the notes and bibliography system. Let’s explore both of them.

Author-Date System

In the author-date system, you include:

  • In-text citations with the author’s last name
  • The publication year
  • A corresponding entry in the reference list

Italicization

In the author-date system, book titles are italicized. It makes them Distinguish from other elements in the citation.

Chicago style uses a title case for book titles in the author-date system. It means the first letter of the title, subtitles, and any major words are capitalized.

There should be a period at the end of the full book citation in the reference list.

Example 1: In-Text Citation

Example 2: Reference List Citation

Smith, John. 2019.  The Theory of Everything . Publisher.

Notes and Bibliography System

You use footnotes or endnotes in the notes and bibliography system for in-text citations and a bibliography for the full list of references.

Similar to the author-date system, book titles are italicized in the notes and bibliography system.

In the notes and bibliography system, the Chicago style uses headline-style capitalization for book titles. It means that the first letter of the first and last words of the title are capitalized.

Put a period at the end of each full bibliographic entry in the notes and bibliography system.

Example 3: Footnote/Endnote Citation

John Smith,  The Theory of Everything  (Publisher, 2019), 25.

Example 4: Bibliography Citation

Smith, John.  The Theory of Everything . Publisher, 2019.

You may include the edition number after the title, and for multi-volume works, the volume number after the title.

Example 5: Edition Number

Johnson, Mary.  Chemistry in Focus . 2nd ed.

Example 6: Volume Number

Smith, Adam.  The Wealth of Nations . Vol. 1.

For translated works, include the original title and the translator’s name in the citation.

Example 7: Translated Title

Kafka, Franz.  The Metamorphosis . Translated by David Wyllie.

Citation of Book Titles in Other Situations

Let’s highlight some unusual circumstances of including a title of book in essay. Starting with:

Book titles within quotations

If you’re citing a direct quote from a book in your essay, you may need to put the book title in quotes. Generally, you should use double quotation marks for this.

For example:

According to Mark Twain, “The secret of getting ahead is getting started.”

In the novel 1984, George Orwell explores the theme of government surveillance through the famous line, “Big Brother is watching you.”

By using double quotation marks, you indicate that the words within the quotation marks are taken directly from the book.

Book Titles in Footnotes or Endnotes

In academic writing, footnotes or endnotes can be added to give extra info or credits. When including book titles, how you format them depends on the citation style you’re using.

In Chicago Style, book titles in footnotes or endnotes should usually be italicized or in quotation marks.

For Example:

Jane Austen,  Pride and Prejudice  (New York: Penguin Classics, 2002), 45.

Harper Lee,  To Kill a Mockingbird , (New York: Harper Perennial, 2006), 77.

Handling Foreign language book titles

Follow these rules for citing a book in a foreign language. You should keep the original language title, especially if it’s a popular work.

Italicize the foreign language book title following the same guidelines as you would for an English book title. Include a translation in parentheses if necessary.

Use the original foreign language title in sentence case without italics or quotation marks. Include a translation in brackets if needed.

Italicize or use quotation marks for foreign language book titles, following the same guidelines as you would for an English book title. Include a translation if required.

Special Cases

In certain situations, you might need to format book titles differently. Like if you’re talking about a poem or play. These types of works have their own rules for formatting titles. Let’s get to know them briefly. 

Typically, you’d put poem titles in quotation marks and longer pieces of poetry, like epics, in italics. It’s worth checking the style guide you’re using, though, since the rules can vary.

You’ll usually see the title written in italics when it comes to plays. The names of characters or speakers within the play are usually written with a mix of upper- and lowercase letters, without quotation marks.

Best Practices for Including Book Titles in Essays

Double-check formatting guidelines.

It’s super important to double-check the formatting rules for book titles when writing an essay since each style guide has its own rules. You need to make sure you’re following them properly.

Proofreading for Accuracy and Consistency

Look out for mistakes in how you’ve done the capitals, italics, and quotes. Double-check any extra rules that might apply to foreign language books, poems, plays, and other special cases.

Seek Assistance from Style Guides or Writing Resources

It’s a good idea to get help from style guides or writing tools when you are stuck with citations. You can also buy cheap essay from a well-reputed writing services provider.

It’s super important to get book titles in essays right. Not just for clarity but also to show you’re a pro. Ensure that you stick to the accurate style guide. It could be MLA, APA, or Chicago. Plus, there are special rules for poems and more.

Furthermore, if you need a professional to help you out with citations, do count on the expertise of  our writers . They are always available to get you out of your troubles of how to write book titles in essays.

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  • How to cite a short story in MLA

How to Cite a Short Story in MLA | Format & Examples

Published on June 28, 2021 by Jack Caulfield . Revised on March 5, 2024.

When you quote from a short story in MLA Style, make sure to properly introduce the quote and to follow it with an MLA in-text citation giving the author’s last name and the page number of the quote.

The narrator tells us that Bartleby “seemed to gorge himself on my documents” (Melville 11) .

The citation corresponds to an entry in your Works Cited list, giving the story’s author and its title in quotation marks, followed by the publication details of the container (e.g. a book, magazine, or website). The story in this example comes from a collection with an editor.

Our free MLA Citation Generator can help you create MLA citations for short stories.

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Table of contents

Quoting and citing a short story, citing a short story from a book, citing a short story from a newspaper or magazine, citing a short story found online, frequently asked questions about mla citations.

When you quote from a short story, it’s important to properly introduce the quotation in your own words.

For example, you could use an introductory sentence followed by a colon . The in-text citation is placed directly after the quotation.

The narrator refers to the mystery of his father’s behavior: “Why did Father smile to himself, why did his eyes turn up, misty, in a parody of mock admiration?” (Schulz 99) .

Or you can integrate the quote into your own sentence, as shown below. If you name the author when introducing the quote, you only need to include the page number in parentheses.

Schulz describes the interior of the shop as a “cosmogony of cloth” (89) .

If you quote more than four lines, format it as a block quote .

Consecutive citations of the same story

If you’re referring to the same story repeatedly, you don’t need to include the author name in every citation. As long as it’s clear you’re citing the same source again, omit the author name and just cite the page number.

Schulz describes the interior of the shop as a “cosmogony of cloth . . . a fantastic Canaan” (89) . The biblical imagery continues: the objects of the father’s anger are referred to as “idolaters” and “worshippers of Baal” (90) .

If you refer to a different source in between or start a new paragraph, include the author’s name in the citation again.

Prevent plagiarism. Run a free check.

To cite a short story from an edited collection , after giving the author and title of the story, list the title of the book, the editor(s), the publisher, the year, and the page range on which the story appears.

If the story is published in a single-author collection, without a named editor, simply omit the editor from the reference.

To cite a story published in a newspaper or magazine , list the name of the periodical, the date of publication, and the page range where the story can be found.

For a short story published online, whether in an online magazine or elsewhere, list the website name, the date it was published, and the URL.

Note that if there are no page numbers and the author is already named in your sentence (narrative citation), no parenthetical citation is needed.

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See an example

how do you quote a novel title in an essay

In MLA Style , you should cite a specific chapter or work within a book in two situations:

  • When each of the book’s chapters is written by a different author.
  • When the book is a collection of self-contained works (such as poems , plays , or short stories ), even if they are all written by the same author.

If you cite multiple chapters or works from the same book, include a separate Works Cited entry for each chapter.

In MLA style , book titles appear in italics, with all major words capitalized. If there is a subtitle, separate it from the main title with a colon and a space (even if no colon appears in the source). For example:

The format is the same in the Works Cited list and in the text itself. However, when you mention the book title in the text, you don’t have to include the subtitle.

The title of a part of a book—such as a chapter, or a short story or poem in a collection—is not italicized, but instead placed in quotation marks.

Cite this Scribbr article

If you want to cite this source, you can copy and paste the citation or click the “Cite this Scribbr article” button to automatically add the citation to our free Citation Generator.

Caulfield, J. (2024, March 05). How to Cite a Short Story in MLA | Format & Examples. Scribbr. Retrieved April 2, 2024, from https://www.scribbr.com/mla/short-story-citation/

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How do I punctuate quoted dialogue from a novel?

How you punctuate quoted dialogue from a novel will depend on what you are quoting and how you are quoting it. See the three most common considerations below.

Quoting Dialogue and Text

If you are incorporating a quotation featuring both exposition and a character’s speech into your text, use double quotation marks around the quotation and single quotation marks around the character’s speech that is within the quotation:

Early in F. Scott Fitzgerald’s  The Great Gatsby ,   Miss Baker, upon meeting Nick Carraway, makes the first reference in the novel to the title character: “‘You live in West Egg,’ she remarked contemptuously. ‘I know somebody there’” (11).

Quoting Only Dialogue

If you quote only the speech, use double quotation marks around it:

Early in F. Scott Fitzgerald’s  The Great Gatsby , Miss Baker tells Nick Carraway that he must be familiar with someone she knows from West Egg: “You must know Gatsby” (11).

Using Block Quotes

When quoting dialogue from a novel, set the quotation off from your text as a block if each character’s speech starts on a new line in the source. Indent the extract half an inch from the left margin, as you would any block quotation. If a character’s speech runs onto a new line, as it does below, indent each line of dialogue an additional half an inch. Use double quotation marks around the spoken words : 

Early in F. Scott Fitzgerald’s  The Great Gatsby , Miss Baker tells the narrator, Nick Carraway, that she knows someone from his town: “You live in West Egg,” she remarked contemptuously. “I know somebody there.” “I don’t know a single–” “You must know Gatsby.” “Gatsby?” demanded Daisy. “What Gatsby?” (11) Work Cited Fitzgerald, F. Scott. The Great Gatsby. Scribner, 1953.

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Use Your Allusion: See How Many Literary References You Recognize

By J. D. Biersdorfer March 28, 2024

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Lines from poems and plays frequently serve as inspiration for later literary allusions. This 12-question quiz is crafted from a running list created by the Book Review’s staff to test your knowledge on a wide variety of referenced works. The source material spans thousands of years and includes ancient Greek history and modern pop songs.

The quiz is in the multiple-choice format, so just tap or click your answers. After you finish, you’ll get your score and a list of links to the original works. (And yes, the headline above does allude to a pair of 1991 albums from the rock band Guns N’ Roses. Give yourself extra credit if you spotted it.)

Video illustration by Erik Carter

The opening credit screen of the "Twilight Zone" television series, with the show's title in jagged gray type above the words "I Sing the Body Electric."

Over the years, “I Sing the Body Electric” has been used repeatedly, including as the title for a Ray Bradbury short story (and his “Twilight Zone” script), as a musical anthem to creativity in the 1980 film “Fame” and in the lyrics of a 2012 Lana Del Rey song. But who said it first?

Benjamin Franklin

Mary Shelley

Walt Whitman

Paule Marshall

Thre ebook covers in a row: "Things Fall Apart"; The Widening Gyre" and "Slouching Towards Bethlehem"

Chinua Achebe’s 1958 novel “Things Fall Apart,” Joan Didion’s 1968 essay collection “Slouching Towards Bethlehem” and Robert B. Parker’s 1983 thriller “The Widening Gyre” all take their titles from the same poem. What is the original poem — and who is its author?

“The Second Coming,” by William Butler Yeats

“The Road Not Taken,” by Robert Frost

“‘Hope’ Is the Thing With Feathers,” by Emily Dickinson

“The Charge of the Light Brigade,” by Alfred Tennyson

A group of men in World War II army fatigues.

“Band of Brothers,” the 2001 World War II television drama, is based on a 1992 book by Stephen E. Ambrose. But which previous work used the phrase “band of brothers” quite notably?

“All Quiet on the Western Front,” by Erich Maria Remarque

“Henry V,” by William Shakespeare

“Richard III,” by William Shakespeare

“The Red Badge of Courage,” by Stephen Crane

Two men in brown leather World War II aviator uniforms standing in front of a big silver plane.

Wait! “Band of Brothers” was decades ago and I just finished watching the new “Masters of the Air” series. Is that show’s title an allusion as well? If so, quiz me!

George Orwell

Winston S. Churchill

John Maynard Keynes

The Penguin Classics over of "The Sea, the Sea" showing a pair of legs standing by an oceanfront window

Moving on from land and air to water now: The title of “The Sea, the Sea,” Iris Murdoch’s 1978 novel, is also a famous line (“Θάλαττα! θάλαττα!” in the original language) shouted by Greek warriors when they reached the top of a mountain and could see a nearby body of water. What is the name of the Greek work?

“Odyssey,” by Homer

“Lysistrata,” by Aristophanes

“The Persians,” by Aeschylus

“Anabasis,” by Xenophon

Four Black people in 1950s costume sitting around a kitchen table on the set of a play.

Which 1951 poem by Langston Hughes gave the playwright Lorraine Hansberry the title for her 1959 stage play, “A Raisin in the Sun”?

“Let America Be America Again”

“The Weary Blues”

An engraving of a wide-eyed balding man in an Elizabethan-era suit.

OK, back to Shakespeare, because that guy had a serious literary output that is still influential centuries later: Which one of the following books does NOT take its title from “Macbeth”?

“The Sound and the Fury,” by William Faulkner

“Let It Come Down,” by Paul Bowles

“For Whom the Bell Tolls,” by Ernest Hemingway

“Something Wicked This Way Comes,” by Ray Bradbury

“The Moon Is Down,” by John Steinbeck

A smiling elderly Black woman in a turquoise dress and a floral necklace stands in front of a microphone.

The last line of Paul Laurence Dunbar’s 1899 poem “Sympathy” gave Maya Angelou the title for her first autobiography in 1969. What is that title?

“Little Brown Baby”

“Invitation to Love”

“I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings”

A balding, bearded man in 19th-century dress.

Elif Batuman has named both a novel and a nonfiction book after works by a certain 19th-century Russian author who wrote, among other things, “The Brothers Karamazov.” Who is this writer?

Alexander Pushkin

Leo Tolstoy

Fyodor Dostoyevsky

Nikolai Gogol

A record album cover with the words "Rubber Soul" printed in a stylized typeface above a photo of four long-haired young white men.

Which novelist is renowned for his allusions to popular music and literature in his work — and named his 1987 novel after a Beatles song on the band’s 1965 “Rubber Soul” album?

Bret Easton Ellis

Haruki Murakami

Paul Beatty

Hanif Kureishi

A young black man in an open-collared shirt and jacket stands in front of a stained-glass window.

In the epigraph of his 2015 book, “Between the World and Me,” Ta-Nehisi Coates quotes a passage of a poem with the same title that influenced him. Who wrote that poem?

Gwendolyn Brooks

James Baldwin

Toni Morrison

Richard Wright

A camper in an mountainous area of Scotland, sitting next to flagpoles flying the country's blue-and-white Saltire flag and its red-and-yellow Rampant Lion flag.

Which Scotsman’s work inspired the titles of John Steinbeck’s “Of Mice and Men” and J.D. Salinger’s “The Catcher in the Rye”?

Sir Walter Scott

Robert Louis Stevenson

Robert Burns

James Boswell

Explore More in Books

Want to know about the best books to read and the latest news start here..

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How did gender become a scary word? Judith Butler, the theorist who got us talking about the subject , has answers.

You never know what’s going to go wrong in these graphic novels, where Circus tigers, giant spiders, shifting borders and motherhood all threaten to end life as we know it .

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Do you want to be a better reader?   Here’s some helpful advice to show you how to get the most out of your literary endeavor .

Each week, top authors and critics join the Book Review’s podcast to talk about the latest news in the literary world. Listen here .

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Cash-strapped Trump is now selling $60 Bibles, U.S. Constitution included

Rachel Treisman

how do you quote a novel title in an essay

Then-President Donald Trump holds up a Bible outside St. John's Episcopal Church in Washington, D.C., during a controversial 2020 photo-op. Brendan Smialowski/AFP via Getty Images hide caption

Then-President Donald Trump holds up a Bible outside St. John's Episcopal Church in Washington, D.C., during a controversial 2020 photo-op.

Former President Donald Trump is bringing together church and state in a gilded package for his latest venture, a $60 "God Bless The USA" Bible complete with copies of the nation's founding documents.

Trump announced the launch of the leather-bound, large-print, King James Bible in a post on Truth Social on Tuesday — a day after the social media company surged in its trading debut and two days after a New York appeals court extended his bond deadline to comply with a ruling in a civil fraud case and slashed the bond amount by 61%.

"Happy Holy Week! Let's Make America Pray Again," Trump wrote. "As we lead into Good Friday and Easter, I encourage you to get a copy of the God Bless The USA Bible."

Why Trump's Persecution Narrative Resonates With Christian Supporters

Consider This from NPR

Why trump's persecution narrative resonates with christian supporters.

The Bible is inspired by "God Bless the USA," the patriotic Lee Greenwood anthem that has been a fixture at many a Trump rally (and has a long political history dating back to Ronald Reagan). It is the only Bible endorsed by Trump as well as Greenwood, according to its promotional website .

The Bible is only available online and sells for $59.99 (considerably more expensive than the traditional Bibles sold at major retailers, or those available for free at many churches and hotels). It includes Greenwood's handwritten chorus of its titular song as well as copies of historical documents including the U.S. Constitution, Declaration of Independence and Pledge of Allegiance.

"Many of you have never read them and don't know the liberties and rights you have as Americans, and how you are being threatened to lose those rights," Trump said in a three-minute video advertisement.

"Religion and Christianity are the biggest things missing from this country, and I truly believe that we need to bring them back and we have to bring them back fast."

'You gotta be tough': White evangelicals remain enthusiastic about Donald Trump

'You gotta be tough': White evangelicals remain enthusiastic about Donald Trump

Trump critics on both sides of the aisle quickly criticized the product, characterizing it as self-serving and hypocritical.

Conservative political commentator Charlie Sykes slammed him for "commodifying the Bible during Holy Week," while Democratic Sen. Amy Klobuchar of Minnesota critiqued him for "literally taking a holy book and selling it, and putting it out there in order to make money for his campaign."

Trump says the money isn't going to his campaign, but more on that below.

Klobuchar added that Trump's public attacks on others are "not consistent with the teachings of the Bible," calling this "one more moment of hypocrisy." Tara Setmayer, a senior adviser for anti-Trump Republican PAC the Lincoln Project, called it "blasphemous ."

And former Rep. Liz Cheney, a Republican from Wyoming, trolled Trump with a social media post alluding to his alleged extramarital affairs.

"Happy Holy Week, Donald," she wrote. "Instead of selling Bibles, you should probably buy one. And read it, including Exodus 20:14 ."

Christianity is an increasingly prominent part of his campaign

Trump has made a point of cultivating Christian supporters since his 2016 presidential campaign and remains popular with white evangelicals despite his multiple divorces, insults toward marginalized groups and allegations of extramarital affairs and sexual assault.

And his narrative of being persecuted — including in the courts — appears to resonate with his many Christian supporters.

Trump has increasingly embraced Christian nationalist ideas in public. He promised a convention of religious broadcasters last month that he would use a second term to defend Christian values from the "radical left," swearing that "no one will be touching the cross of Christ under the Trump administration."

He made similar comments in the Bible promotional video, in which he warned that "Christians are under siege" and the country is "going haywire" because it lost religion.

What to know about the debut of Trump's $399 golden, high-top sneakers

What to know about the debut of Trump's $399 golden, high-top sneakers

"We must defend God in the public square and not allow the media or the left-wing groups to silence, censor or discriminate against us," he said. "We have to bring Christianity back into our lives and back into what will be again a great nation."

Trump himself is not known to be particularly religious or a regular churchgoer. He long identified as Presbyterian but announced in 2020 that he identified as nondenominational .

A Pew Research Center survey released earlier this month found that most people with positive views of Trump don't see him as especially religious, but think he stands up for people with religious beliefs like their own.

Trump said in the promotional video that he has many Bibles at home.

"It's my favorite book," he said, echoing a comment he's made in previous years. "It's a lot of people's favorite book."

The Impact Of Christian Nationalism On American Democracy

Trump's relationship to the Bible has been a point of discussion and sometimes controversy over the years.

In 2020, amid protests over George Floyd's murder, he posed with a Bible outside a Washington, D.C., church, for which he was widely criticized. U.S. Park Police and National Guard troops had tear-gassed peaceful protesters in the area beforehand, seemingly to make way for the photo-op, though a watchdog report the following year determined otherwise .

That same year, a clip of a 2015 Bloomberg interview, in which Trump declines to name his favorite — or any — Bible verse resurfaced on social media and went viral.

Bible sales are unlikely to solve Trump's financial problems

An FAQ section on the Bible website says no profits will go to Trump's reelection campaign.

"GodBlessTheUSABible.com is not political and has nothing to do with any political campaign," it says.

However, the site adds that it uses Trump's name, likeness and image "under paid license from CIC Ventures LLC."

Trump is listed as the manager, president, secretary and treasurer of CIC Ventures LLC in a financial disclosure from last year.

Here's what happens if Trump can't pay his $454 million bond

Here's what happens if Trump can't pay his $454 million bond

Trump's sales pitch focuses on bringing religion back to America.

"I want to have a lot of people have it," he said at one point in the video. "You have to have it for your heart and for your soul."

But many are wondering whether Trump has something else to gain from Bible sales while facing under mounting financial pressure.

There's his presidential reelection campaign, which has raised only about half of what Biden's has so far this cycle. Trump acknowledged Monday that he "might" spend his own money on his campaign, something he hasn't done since 2016.

There's also his mounting legal expenses, as he faces four criminal indictments and numerous civil cases. Trump posted bond to support a $83.3 million jury award granted to writer E. Jean Carroll in a defamation case earlier this month, and was due to put up another $454 million in a civil fraud case this past Monday.

Trump is on the verge of a windfall of billions of dollars. Here are 3 things to know

Trump is on the verge of a windfall of billions of dollars. Here are 3 things to know

His lawyers had said last week that they had approached 30 companies for help making bond, but doing so was a "practical impossibility" — prompting New York's attorney general to confirm that if Trump did not pay, she would move to seize his assets . On Monday, the appeals court reduced the bond amount to $175 million and gave Trump another 10 days to post it.

Trump has evidently been trying to raise money in other ways.

The day after the civil fraud judgment was announced, he debuted a line of $399 golden, high-top sneakers , which sold out in hours . The company behind his social media app, Truth Social, started trading on the Nasdaq exchange on Tuesday, which could deliver him a windfall of more than $3 billion — though he can't sell his shares for another six months.

  • Donald J. Trump
  • sales pitch
  • Christianity

IMAGES

  1. 3 Ways to Cite a Book in MLA Style

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  2. 022 How To Cite An Essay In Book Mla Example ~ Thatsnotus

    how do you quote a novel title in an essay

  3. mla citing of books

    how do you quote a novel title in an essay

  4. 4 Ways to Cite an Essay

    how do you quote a novel title in an essay

  5. How to properly cite a book in an essay using mla

    how do you quote a novel title in an essay

  6. How to quote something from a book in an essay

    how do you quote a novel title in an essay

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  1. How do you cite a quote from a person?

  2. Do you quote TV shows in essays?

  3. How often do you quote I Love You Man? #movie #comedy #foryou #subscribe

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  5. Life is not a race. #shorts

  6. How do you quote a series title?

COMMENTS

  1. MLA Titles

    Use quotation marks around the title if it is part of a larger work (e.g. a chapter of a book, an article in a journal, or a page on a website). All major words in a title are capitalized. The same format is used in the Works Cited list and in the text itself. Place in quotation marks. Italicize.

  2. 3 Ways to Quote a Book

    3. Use a parenthetical citation. You need to cite the author, year of publication, and page number (preceded by "p.") The best way to do this is to use a signal phrase with the author's name in it, followed by the date of publication and the page number in parenthesis.

  3. How to Write Book Titles in Your Essays

    As a general rule, you should set titles of longer works in italics, and titles of shorter works go in quotation marks. Longer works include books, journals, TV shows, albums, plays, etc. Here's an example of a book mention: Sense and Sensibility, published in 1811, was Jane Austen's first novel. Shorter works include poems, articles ...

  4. How to Cite a Book Title in APA, MLA or Chicago

    For subtitles, capitalize the first word of a subtitle, even if it is a short, minor word. For example, Queen of Scots: The True Life of Mary Stuart. Chicago. Use title case, or "headline-style," when writing book titles in the text. In title case in Chicago format, capitalize the following: The first and last words in titles and subtitles.

  5. Title

    Massachusetts P /Center for the Book, Library of Congress, 2007. The title of a story, poem or essay in a collection, as part of a larger whole, is placed in quotation marks. Dewar, James A., and Peng Hwa Ang. "The Cultural Consequences of Printing and the Internet." Agent of Change: Print Culture Studies after Elizabeth L. Eisenstein.

  6. How to Write Book Titles in Essays: APA, MLA, Chicago Styles

    Do you italicize book titles? Yes, you put book titles in italics. Please italicize long and stand-alone works: books, movies, webpages, reports, or music albums. Shorter works' titles (articles, essays, poems, songs, or book chapters) come in quotations. (1) Do you underline book titles? Underlining book titles is an outdated practice.

  7. MLA Style Guide, 7th Edition: Titles

    Refer to section 3.6.4 of the MLA Manual for more about titles and quotations within titles. Section 3.6.5 discusses exceptions to the rules. Rules for capitalizing are strict. Capitalize all principal words (nouns, verbs, adjectives, etc.). Do not capitalize articles, prepostions, or conjunctions when they fall in the middle of a title.

  8. How Do You Write the Title of a Book in MLA Style?

    Let's begin by looking at a standard citation for a book in MLA format. Last Name, First Name. Title of Book. Publisher, Publication Date. Notice that the title of the book is italicized. You would also use italics for other forms of media cited in their entirety: Books. Websites. News publications.

  9. How to Write a Book Title and Author in an Essay?

    Underline the complete title, including any words that come after a colon or dash. Underline any punctuation that appears in the book's title. Avoid underlining each word separately; always use one continuous line. Make your line as straight as possible by using a ruler or following the line on the paper.

  10. How to Write a Book Title in MLA Formatting

    In MLA style, book titles are italicized, as so: Henry Thorough argues in Walden that the best life is lived in deliberate simplicity so as to discover what life truly is about. In fact, most style guides, including MLA and Chicago style, require book titles to be italicized, not underlined. If the book title has a subtitle, the subtitle should ...

  11. How to Write a Book Title in an Essay: Rules and Tips

    Capitalize the first word of titles of books in papers, the first word after a colon, and all major words. Avoid capitalizing minor words (e.g., articles, prepositions, conjunctions) unless they are the first word of the name or longer than four letters. Always place the book title after the author's name.

  12. How To Write Book Titles The Proper Way: A Complete Guide For Writers

    The answer is: in this case, yes. In other cases, sometimes. It's really not as confusing as it seems. When you are talking about a book series but don't want or need to include the complete series titles for the purposes of your work, you only have to put words in italics that also appear in the book titles. So, because Harry Potter is ...

  13. How to Write a Book Title in an Essay (MLA, APA etc.)

    Heart of Darkness ). Place the name of a single chapter in quote marks, instead ("The Great Towns" from Condition of the Working Class in England by Friedrich Engels). APA. Italicize the book title. Capitalize the first letter, the first letter of a subtitle, and proper nouns.

  14. MLA Formatting Quotations

    For quotations that are more than four lines of prose or three lines of verse, place quotations in a free-standing block of text and omit quotation marks. Start the quotation on a new line, with the entire quote indented 1/2 inch from the left margin while maintaining double-spacing. Your parenthetical citation should come after the closing ...

  15. Formatting Titles in Essays (Italics or Quote Marks ...

    When to Use Italics. You can often spot a title from the capitalisation, but we still format titles to distinguish between different types of source. Titles of longer sources, for example, typically use italics: Here, Kerrang! is italicised because it is the title of a magazine (i.e. a standalone work that is not one part of a larger whole).

  16. How to Write a Book Title in an Essay: A Step-by-Step Guide

    In APA style, there should be a colon (:) between the main title and any subtitle. When citing a book title within the text of your paper, use title case and italicize it. When including book titles in your reference list, use sentence case and italicize it. Example 3: Punctuation.

  17. How do I cite a quotation I include in a title or heading?

    In your prose, this generally means including an in-text citation or endnote in due proximity to the quoted material. In a title or heading, however, the attribution appears separately from the quotation, since MLA style does not append note numbers or in-text citations to titles. This means writers using quotations in a title or heading must ...

  18. How to Cite a Short Story in MLA

    To cite a short story from an edited collection, after giving the author and title of the story, list the title of the book, the editor (s), the publisher, the year, and the page range on which the story appears. MLA format. Author last name, First name. " Story Title .".

  19. How do I punctuate quoted dialogue from a novel?

    Using Block Quotes. When quoting dialogue from a novel, set the quotation off from your text as a block if each character's speech starts on a new line in the source. Indent the extract half an inch from the left margin, as you would any block quotation. If a character's speech runs onto a new line, as it does below, indent each line of ...

  20. How Many Literary Allusions Do You Recognize in This 12-Question Quiz

    Use Your Allusion: See How Many Literary References You Recognize. Lines from poems and plays frequently serve as inspiration for later literary allusions. This 12-question quiz is crafted from a ...

  21. Donald Trump is selling a 'God Bless the USA' Bible for $60 : NPR

    Former President Donald Trump is bringing together church and state in a gilded package for his latest venture, a $60 "God Bless The USA" Bible complete with copies of the nation's founding ...