Incredible story of survival and belief

September 20, 2008

Treading Water: Rob Hewitt’s Survival Story, by Rob Hewitt with Aaron Smale (Huia, RRP $30):

We all felt for former All Black Norm Hewitt when the news broke back in February, 2006, that his brother Rob was the diver missing off the Kapiti Coast.

As the hours ticked by, I doubt there was anyone apart from perhaps Rob’s partner who truly believed he was still alive. Family, friends, ex-Navy colleagues and the public in general believed what had been a search for a missing diver would surely be a body recovery.

Seventy-five hours later, the nation was in shock as the news came that Rob had been found alive.

This is the story of his survival. It is an intimate glimpse into the mind of a man who managed to keep himself together during an ordeal that might well test the sanity of most of us. To be alone in the middle of the ocean, believing that help wouldn’t come, would have to be one of the most terrifying things anyone could experience.

Probably as terrifying as being at home, waiting to be told if the body of your loved one had been found.

This book takes us through the hours leading up to the fateful error that left Rob battling Mother Nature for 3 and a bit days, and takes us through everything he experienced during his ordeal.

Throughout it all, his sense of humour and his sense of family shine through. It’s a truly inspirational read.

Jillian Allison-Aitken

I come from the other land down under, where men are men, and sheep are nervous. I'm a sub-editor and in the past have been a proof-reader, news editor and web editor. I am also an ex-columnist, and book and software reviewer for the local daily newspaper.I still read. A lot. And surf the web. Also a lot.You'll find a little about both of those pastimes here, and on By George.

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