Rift over racy kids’ book

NZ Herald 12 January 2014
The head of the Film and Literature Board of Review has broken ranks with his board to express strong reservations about an award-winning children’s book.

Into The River by Ted Dawe is laced with detailed descriptions of sex acts, coarse language and scenes of drug-taking. The book came to public attention after it took top prize at last year’s New Zealand Post Children’s Book Awards.

Award organisers hastily sent “explicit content” stickers to booksellers after the book’s win.

After concerns – including some shops refusing to stock the book – were reported by the Herald on Sunday, the Film and Literature Board of Review was ask to consider restricting Into the River to certain age groups.

In September, the board decided the book should be sold with a warning that it was suitable for readers aged 16 years and older.

Family First national director Bob McCoskrie, who lodged the complaint about the book, said it was disappointing a restricted work was an award-winning children’s book.

READ our Complaint
READ the decision
READ the dissenting opinion by the Chairman (who agreed with our assessment).