For more information about [...], see Book Title by John Doe.

For more information about [...], see John Doe's Book Title

As far as I know, both versions are correct, but the first is more formal and is used more often.

But what about documents that doesn't have the same degree of our respect as books? For example, a group of very young students, about 10 years old, were asked by their teacher to write a story about cats, about 10 sentences. They just learn to write correctly, and they write stories like this one each lesson.

In such a case, is it best to refer to a story by girl who's name is Jane as "a story by Jane" or "Jane's story" if the teacher discuss these stories among adult persons, e.g., with other teachers?

Isn't it that "a story by Jane" sounds too academical, too respectful when we talk about such "documents"?

1 Answer 1


Regardless of simplicity, you have to go with "a story by Jane".

"Jane's story" would likely be interpreted as a story about Jane. Possibly, if you add some additional description, it might avoid such confusion. For example:

"Jane's Story about Butterflies"

  • Yes. "Jane's story" is ambiguous.
    – Mary
    Commented Sep 11, 2021 at 20:38
  • Thanks. But if we talk about a case where there is no such an ambiguity, which version would you prefer? In other words, isn't that "an x by..." may sound too "serious" in some contexts? (x may be "story", "drawing", etc.)
    – user90726
    Commented Sep 11, 2021 at 20:42
  • I don't think it's any problem. But context about whose story and who's discussing it is important. Teachers should have a level of formality regarding students, though.
    – user3169
    Commented Sep 11, 2021 at 20:47

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