1Now the word of the LORD came unto Jonah the son of Amittai, saying,Next Verse 2
The Book of Jonah is one of the Prophets in the Bible. It tells of a Hebrew prophet named Jonah son of Amittai who is sent by God to prophesy the destruction of Nineveh but tries to escape the divine mission. Set in the reign of Jeroboam II (786–746 BC), it was probably written in the post-exilic period, some time between the late 5th to early 4th century BC. The story has an interesting interpretive history and has become well-known through popular children's stories. In Judaism it is the Haftarah, read during the afternoon of Yom Kippur in order to instill reflection on God's willingness to forgive those who repent.
Unlike the other Prophets, the book of Jonah is almost entirely narrative, with the exception of the psalm in chapter 2. The actual prophetic word against Nineveh is given only in passing through the narrative. As with any good narrative, the story of Jonah has a setting, characters, a plot, and themes. It also relies heavily on such literary devices as irony.