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How to Cite Readings Within a Book in MLA Format


Most books have authors. Some books have editors. Other books, such as anthologies, have both. The "MLA Handbook for Writers of Research Papers, 7th Edition" includes instructions for properly crediting the author and the editor in your citations.

Nonfiction

The author and title of the reading are the most important pieces of information. They come first, followed by the title and editor of the book. The rest of the works cited entry is identical to a standard book citation, with one exception: the inclusion of the reading's page range, for example:

Flint, Kate. "The Victorian Novel and Its Readers." The Cambridge Companion to the Victorian Novel. Ed. Deirdre Davis. New York: Cambridge UP, 2005. 17-36. Print.

In your parenthetical citations, include the author's surname followed by the relevant page number.

Literature

If the reading is a work of literature that has been reprinted in the collection or anthology, simply insert the year of the original publication between the reading's title and the book's title.

Lee, Vernon. "Dionea." 1890. Late Victorian Gothic Tales. Ed. Roger Luckhurst. Oxford: Oxford UP, 2005. 3-26. Print.

In your parenthetical citations, include the author's surname followed by the relevant page number. When the context tells your reader what literary work you are referring to, avoid redundancy by omitting the author name.

References
  • MLA Handbook for Writers of Research Papers, 7th Edition; Modern Language Association
About the Author

Lily Carroll works for a non-profit children's literacy organization. She has worked as a college composition instructor and ESL tutor. She holds a Master of Arts in English from Mills College in Oakland.

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