Oh No, Jonah!

  • Interest Level: Kindergarten - Grade 4
  • Reading Level: Grade 3

With beautiful artwork and rollicking rhyme, the Bible story of Jonah and the Whale is retold in a fun and unique fashion.

Format Your Price Add
Interest Level Kindergarten - Grade 4
Reading Level Grade 3
Genre Picture Books
Copyright 2012
Publisher Lerner Publishing Group
Imprint Kar-Ben Publishing ®
Language English
Number of Pages 32
Publication Date 2014-01-01
Text Type Fiction
BISACS JUV033000, JUV033020
Dewey 224'.9209505
Graphics Full-color illustrations
Dimensions 10.375 x 8.875
ATOS Reading Level 2.7
Accelerated Reader® Quiz 153241
Accelerated Reader® Points 0.5
Features Original artwork and Reviewed

Author: Tilda Balsley

Tilda Balsley has written many books for Kar-Ben, bringing her stories to life with rhyme, rhythm, and humor. Tilda lives with her husband and their rescue Shih Tzu in Reidsville, North Carolina.

Illustrator: Jago

Jago has illustrated more than forty books in the United States, the UK, Europe, South Korea, and South Africa. He lives in Cornwall, UK, with his wife and two children. Find him online at www.jagoillustration.com.



Oh No, Jonah!, by Tilda Balsley, illustrations by Jago. A straightforward verse retelling of the story of Jonah, with a refrain younger kids will love to chime in on: ‘Oh no, Jonah!’ (Jonah screws up a lot.)

I appreciated that the text correctly refrains from calling the big fish a whale and tells the story of the sheltering plant as well as the one about the fish. And Jonah comes off, properly, as a whiny pill.

‘Preach,’ said Jonah.
‘That’s not fun— Ragging, nagging everyone.
Who will thank me when I’m done?
I’ll tell you who: Not even one.’

Jago’s textured, luminous illustrations look painterly, but they’re digital, made entirely on a Mac and with an iPad. (‘I could tell you how I make each picture, but then I’d have to kill you,’ he says cheerfully on his website.)”

Jewish Journal

“Those parents and teachers looking for a new twist on the story of Jonah (read yearly on Yom Kippur) need look no more. This latest version from children’s author Tilda Balsley sticks to the biblical text but is appropriate for very young children. The clever rhymes demand to be read out loud, such as after Jonah suggests that the frightened fisherman throw him into the sea:‘Immediately, the weather cleared. / But things were worse than Jonah feared / ‘I wish I hadn’t volunteered.’ ’ The vibrant, bold illustrations are truly stunning, and the artist’s interpretation of a huge, bright orange fish is probably more accurate than the usual depictions of whales. ’A giant fish swam to his side / And stared at him all google-eyed. / Its mouth, humongous, opened wide / and, CHOMP! / He found himself inside.’ Entertaining fun with a biblical message of forgiveness that is surely important to remember during the High Holy Days.” —Jewish Journal

Publishers Weekly

“The biblical story of Jonah the reluctant and cranky prophet is retold in gorgeous color and catchy rhyme…. Jago’s illustrations make the story child-friendly.”—Publishers Weekly