Skip to Main Content

Chicago Citation Style: E-Book

This guide will help you cite sources using the Chicago Citation Style 16th edition.

E-Book (14.166-14.169 / pp. 726-728)

E-books are generally referenced in the same way as other books.  The general format provided below refers to a basic one-author e-book.  

If you are using an e-book that has multiple authors, includes an edition number, etc., please refer to the appropriate section in this guide. Include information on the format of the resource near the end of the footnote or bibliography entry (including a DOI (Direct Object Identifier - see definition belowOR URL for the on-line version of an E-book), as per Examples 2 and 3 below.

If your e-book has no page numbers, use other identifying information for the text you are citing:  "Electronic sources do not always include page numbers (and some that do include them repaginate according to user-defined text size). For such unpaginated works, it may be appropriate in a note to include a chapter or paragraph number (if available), a section heading, or a descriptive phrase that follows the organizational divisions of the work. In citations of shorter electronic works presented as a single, searchable document, such locators may be unnecessary." (14.17 / pp. 661-662) 

General Format 

Full Note:

1. Author First Name/Initial Surname, Book Title: Subtitle (Place of Publication: Publisher, Year), Format, page #.

Concise Note: 

2. Author Surname, Book Title, page #. 


Author Surname, First Name or Initial. Book Title: Subtitle. Place of Publication: Publisher,
     Year. Format.

Example 1 (A page from a Kindle edition e-book)

Full Note:

1. Timothy Egan, The Worst Hard Time: The Untold Story of Those Who Survived the Great American Dust Bowl (New York, NY: Mariner Books / Houghton Mifflin Harcourt, 2006), 150, Kindle edition.

Concise Note:

2.  Egan, The Worst Hard Time, 150.


Egan, Timothy. The Worst Hard Time: The Untold Story of Those Who Survived the Great American Dust Bowl.
     New York, NY: Mariner Books / Houghton Mifflin Harcourt, 2006. Kindle edition. 

Example 2 (A page from a book accessed in Questia School)

Full Note:

1. Jeanita W. Richardson, The Cost of Being Poor: Poverty, Lead Poisoning, and Policy Implementation (Westport, CT: Praeger, 2005), 33,

Concise Note:

2.  Richardson, The Cost of Being, 33.


Richardson, Jeanita W. The Cost of Being Poor: Poverty, Lead Poisoning, and Policy Implementation.
     Westport, CT: Praeger, 2005. Accessed February 21, 2016. 

Example 3 (An entire section from a book accessed in Questia School)

Full Note:

1. John P. Herron, "The Biological Century: The Cultural Importance of Ecological Process," in Science and the Social Good: Nature, Culture, and Community, 1865-1965 (New York, NY: Oxford University Press, 2010), 135-169,

Concise Note:

2.  Herron, "The Biological Century: The Cultural," in Science and the Social, 135-169.


Herron, John P. "The Biological Century: The Cultural Importance of Ecological Process." In
     Science and the Social Good: Nature, Culture, and Community, 1865-1965, 139-65. New York, NY:
     Oxford University Press, 2010. 

Digital Object Identifiers (DOIs) (14.6 / p. 657)

Digital Object Identifier (DOI) is a unique code preferred by publishers in the identification and exchange of the content of a digital object, such as a journal article, Web document, or other item of intellectual property. The DOI consists of two parts: a prefix assigned to each publisher by the administrative DOI agency and a suffix assigned by the publisher that may be any code the publisher chooses. DOIs and their corresponding URLs (Uniform Resource Locators) are registered in a central DOI directory that functions as a routing system.

The DOI is persistent, meaning that the identification of a digital object does not change even if ownership of or rights in the entity are transferred. It is also actionable, meaning that clicking on it in a Web browser display will redirect the user to the content. The DOI is also interoperable, designed to function in past, present, and future digital technologies. The registration and resolver system for the DOI is run by the International DOI Foundation (IDF)

Example: doi:10.1080/14622200410001676305

If a DOI is listed on an electronic source it is included in the reference.  When there is a choice between using a DOI or a URL, it is recommended that a DOI be used.    

Reitz, Joan M. "Digital Object Identifier (DOI)." In Online Dictionary for 
     Library and Information Science. ABC-CLIO, 2014. Accessed February 21, 

About Citing Books

This guide is intended to cover only the Notes and Bibliography system for citing books.

For each type of source in this guide, both the general form and a specific example will be provided.

The following format will be used:

Full Note - use the first time that you cite a source.
Concise Note - use after the first time you cite a source.
Bibliography - use when you are compiling the Bibliography that appears at the end of your paper.

Information on citing and several of the examples were drawn from The Chicago Manual of Style (16th ed.). 

Numbers in parentheses refer to specific sections and pages in the manual.

Learn More

Download this 2-page guide:

Websites with information on using Chicago style:

Polytechnic School Libraries | 1030 E. California Blvd. | Pasadena, CA 91106 | 626-396-6300 |