How to Tell Where a Book Is Published

Every book has one page that lists all relevant information about when and where it was published. This is often referred to as the books “publishing history.” This page can usually be found at the beginning of the book, following the title page. In some very rare cases, this page might be at the end of the book, but you’ll save time by always checking the beginning first. Sometimes this page will state “publishing history” at the top, but in most cases it will begin listing the publishing history immediately before or after the copyright date.

Step 1

Open the book and find the page immediately following the title page.

Step 2

Look for a heading that says "publishing history." If you don't see this heading, then look for the copyright date.

Step 3

Look directly below the line that reads "publishing history," or find the copyright symbol and date. You will find the name of the publishing company and its address either directly above or below the copyright date. You may also find where previous editions were published.


When looking for the publishing history in a paperback book, you might have to flip five to 10 pages into the book to find the publishing history page. Often, the first few pages of paperbacks are filled with short reviews of the book. However, even if you have to flip to page 10, the publishing history page will follow the book's title page. In hardback volumes, the title page is usually the second or third page in the book.

If you happen to come across a book without a cover or title page, you'll probably find the book has no publishing history page. If this is the case, then the book is probably either stolen or has been duplicated illegally. Don't purchase a book in this condition. It is illegal, and the author receives no monetary compensation from your purchase.

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