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'Two hours of my life that I won't recover' - Family First boss on banned book

The head of Family First, whose opposition to Ted Dawe's coming-of-age novel Into The River has seen it temporarily banned, says he has read the book and it's "two hours of my life that I won't recover".

The award-winning novel has been pulled from shelves after the Film and Literature Board of Review slapped an interim ban on it.

It was initially given an unrestricted rating with explicit warning stickers, then an R14 rating before the chief censor removed all restrictions.

The interim ban was imposed after Family First - upset at the book's "strong sexual content and foul language" - asked for the restriction to be reinstated.

Bob McCoskrie , head of the Christian lobby group, says he didn't want the book banned but claims it needs a restriction due to its content.

"I’ve sat with a group of fathers a couple of days ago and shown them extracts from the book, I’ve sat and talked to parents,  and they are just horrified when they read what is in the book," he told TVNZ's Breakfast.

"I’ve read it from cover to cover and it’s two hours of my life that I’ll never recover."

The book is still available on Amazon, but it can't be sold or lent within New Zealand.

Family First’s Bob McCoskrie had some fresh criticism of Into The River ready when he appeared on Breakfast today. Source: Breakfast

Mr McCoskrie says he doesn't regret taking the action, saying "you can either remain silent or you can speak up".