Kainui is one of a pair of double planets circling a pair of binary stars. Mike Hoani has come there to study the languarge of the colonists. But Kainui is an ocean planet, covered in water 1700 miles deep, with no solid ground anywhere. The population is scattered in cities on floating artificial islands with no fixed locations. The atmosphere isn't breathable, and lightning, water-spouts, and tsunamis are constant. Out on the great planetary ocean, self-sufficiency is crucial, and far from any floating city, on a small working-family ship, anything can happen. Mike's academic research turns into an exotic nautical adventure unlike anything he could have imagined.
Hal Clement (1922 - 2003)
Hal Clement is the nom de plume under which Harry Clement Stubbs wrote science fiction. Born in Massachusetts in 1922, he graduated from Harvard with a BSc. in astronomy, and later added degrees in chemistry and education. A former B-24 pilot who saw active service during the Second World War, he worked for most of his life as a high-school science teacher. He made his reputation as an SF writer with the work that appeared in Astounding, where his best-known novel, Mission of Gravity, first appeared in serialised form in 1953.