Haruki Murakami’s cult hit Norwegian Wood is one of pair of books that has been dropped from a New Jersey school reading list for “inappropriate” sexual references.

The other, Tweak: Growing up on Methamphetamines by Nic Sheff was dropped for its reference to a “drug-fuelled, homosexual orgy”. This had been intended for senior students, 17 or 18 years of age.

1987’s Norwegian Wood charts the story of a young man in Tokyo and his relationships with two women. An ancillary character, Reiko, describes a sexual encounter she had with a 13-year-old girl. Norwegian Wood was a set text for students around 15 or 16 years of age.

The school board at Williamstown High School, New Jersey said it had received multiple complaints about the material.

Robin Myers’ daughter was instructed to read Norwegian Wood over the summer. She told the Gloucester County Times: “I don’t think that’s relevant for any teenager. I was just kind of in shock.”

Peter Sprigg, from the Family Research Council told Fox News: “Here we see the intersection of parental values being offended, the hypersexualisation of our youth and the homosexual agenda being pushed. This just illustrates why a lot of American parents are not willing to entrust their children to the public schools any more.”

“To a large extent the educational community and the library community have come under the control of very radical liberal ideology with regard to sexuality, and they view anything that might remotely be called censorship as the ultimate evil. Exposing children to graphic sexual content – that is not as evil as censorship in the minds of some leftwing activists.”

Mr Sprigg wrote a book entitled Outrage: How Gay Activists and Liberal Judges Are Trashing Democracy to Redefine Marriage.

The US school’s Superintendent Chuck Earling said: “Some of the language is inappropriate and we missed it in our committee that scanned the books.”

But he added: “You want to spur interest in kids reading that fits their needs not that of people in the 1930s. Interests change.”

Parents, Earling said, would be included on next year’s reading panel.