How to cite a book in Chicago

Chicago style book citation

To cite a book in a reference entry in Chicago style 17th edition include the following elements:

  1. Author(s) of the book: Give first the last name, then the name as presented in the source (e. g. Watson, John). For two authors, reverse only the first name, followed by ‘and’ and the second name in normal order (e. g. Watson, John, and John Watson). For more than seven authors, list the first seven names followed by et al.
  2. Title of the book: Give the title as presented in the source.
  3. Place of publication: Give the place of publication of the source.
  4. Publisher: Give the publisher name in full.
  5. Year of publication: Give the year of publication as presented in the source.

Here is the basic format for a reference list entry of a book in Chicago style 17th edition:

Author(s) of the book. Title of the book. Place of publication: Publisher, Year of publication.

Take a look at our reference list examples that demonstrate the Chicago style guidelines in action:


Book with one author.

Haley, Alex. Roots: The Saga of an American Family. New York: Doubleday, 1976.

Book with two authors.

King, Stephen, and Peter Straub. The Talisman. New York: Viking Press1984.

Book with three authors.

Sumantran, Venkat, Charles Fine, and David Gonsalvez. Faster, Smarter, Greener: The Future of the Car and Urban Mobility. Cambridge: MIT Press, 2017.

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