The raunchy best-seller Fifty Shades of Grey is off-limits to women prisoners after it was deemed to contain objectionable or offensive material.
The controversial book - which has been dubbed "mummy porn" due to its explicit erotic content - was made available to inmates after it was donated to Christchurch Women's Prison, Corrections said in response to an Official Information Act request.
However, a Corrections spokeswoman later said the book had not been made available for issue and would be withdrawn because it was "not deemed suitable for the prison".
"The current library policy and rules state that prison library collections shall not contain any objectionable or offensive material."
The novel would be in hot demand if it was available in New Zealand prisons, if the United Kingdom is anything to go by.
It has been purchased by at least five women's prison libraries in the UK - and demand is so high that prisoners are putting their names on waiting lists to read it, according to the Daily Mail.
Corrections field manager Jo Green said the novel was not purchased by the department and a copy had been donated to Christchurch Women's Prison.
She said prison library rules stated that collections should not contain books and publications which were pornographic, gang-related or "prejudicial to reducing reoffending" - which included overtly violent, objectionable or occult material.
The rules also banned "any other material prison staff considers may interfere with the effective management, security and good order of the prison".
The only publication to be specifically banned anywhere in New Zealand prisons is the New Zealand Truth newspaper.
A Corrections spokeswoman said the newspaper was banned by the Auckland Prison manager due to "the negative effect that the publication has on the good order of the prison".
Prisoners are still able to access local and world news via all other newspapers, radio stations and free-to-air television.