— SLANZA New Zealand (@Schoollibsnz) October 14, 2015
Penguin Random House New Zealand Managing Director, Margaret Thompson, said the company was delighted the book’s intended audience will now be able to access the book freely, as it grapples with important issues, including racism and bullying, that are relevant to young New Zealanders today, particularly teenage male readers. As acknowledged by the Film and Literature Board of Review Into the River is ‘likely to inform and educate the intended readers about the potentially negative consequences that can follow from involvement in casual sex, underage drinking, drug taking, crime, violence and bullying’.
The Board noted that the book served a useful purpose in ‘raising these issues for thought and debate and creating a context which might help young adults think more deeply about choices they may be called upon to make.’
Margaret Thompson said Penguin Random House New Zealand was proud to be the publisher of Into the River, a high-quality work of literature for young adults which had won critical acclaim from some of New Zealand’s most respected writers and literary critics.
‘The Board’s majority decision is a victory for freedom of expression and the right of authors and publishers to deal with the challenging social issues young people face today in high-quality works of literature.’
In response to the Board’s decision to uphold the removal of the R14 restriction by the Classification Office Ted Dawe said ‘I am thrilled. It has restored my faith in New Zealand’s legal system.’