I'd heard that Frank Schätzing is one of the biggest names in contemporary German SF, and decided to investigate a little further. His latest, Limit (2009), has outsold even Dan Brown, apparently; but it doesn't seem to have been translated into English. So instead I read his previous, The Swarm, in Sally-Ann Spencer's Hodder translation.
This very long disaster yarn (881 small-type, close-printed pages in the English) is essentially The Birds with marine life instead of birds. At one point Schätzing even has a character say 'it's like a deep-sea version of The Birds!', presumably in an attempt to innoculate the book against the reader going 'but this is just a deep-sea version of The Birds!' Didn't stop me, though. About halfway through -- and according to internet translation sites the German for spoiler is Räuber [hmm: or is that cars? note: turns out (see comment) it means 'robber', and the German for spoiler is, um, spoiler] --- it turns into The Kraken Wakes, with the twist that the malign deep sea intelligences waging war on mankind are native rather than alien. Worms chew oceanbed substrate and release enormous quantities of noxious gas; mussels clog ships rudders; lobsters explode in restaurants (no! really!), crabs advance onto the beaches in huge numbers. It takes an awfully long time to get where it's going; and where it's going is neither earth-shattering, nor mind-blowing.
The most striking thing about The Swarm is just how prodigiously infodumpy it is. Enormous quantities of regurgitated marine research are artlessly deposited onto the narrative either in gear-grinding descriptive passages ('Eddie switched on the six external floodlights. The four 150-watt quartz halogen bulbs and the two 400watt HMI lights combined to bathe an area twenty-five metres in radius in a pool of glistening light' 323), or else in yawn-flirting dialogue of the 'what do you know about X?' 'I know Y.' 'Very good, but you also need to know Z, A and B' variety.
It's a novel of great length but almost no density, a combination that gives it something of the texture of extruded polystyrene. More, the great length works against the main function of a thriller (which is to say: thrills) by slowing everything down to a plod. There's one place, though one only, where form and function come together, and where the novel lifts itself out of its nerdily relentless groove ... or more precisely: one place where the nerdily relentless groove enhances rather than detracts from the effect: midstory a tsunami is described from inception to devestating passage over densely populated coasts. The unavoidable, irresistible force of this agent of natural destruction is well rendered. Otherwise the book is very weakly written. It feels like the sort of novel a highly intelligent but shy and geeky thirteen-year-old might perpetrate.
'The worm is methanotrophic. It lives symbiotically with the bacteria that break down methane. ... You see, depending on the isotope -- you do know what an isotope is?'
'Any two or more atoms of a chemical element with the same atomic number but with differing atomic mass.'
'Ten out of ten! So, take carbon. It doesn't always have the same atomic mass. You can have carbon-12 or carbon-13.' 
It's possible that the huge length of this novel is, as it were, gratuitous; but I tend to think that there is reason behind Schätzing's laboriousness. This bulk is a kind of chaff, designed to distract the reader from what would, in a shorter story, be revealed as risible: for the central conceit here (and, again, Räuber!) is beyond stupid, viz. that mankind evolved on this planet alongside a second, superintelligent, tool-using, native form of life, amœboid in form, which, despite global reach, a group memory millions of years old, and intimate interaction with the human sphere nobody has ever noticed before, and which, after centuries of human pollution of the oceans, chooses this moment to make itself known in an attempt at speciecide. The Swarm is probably a better title than When Superintelligent Oceanic Amœbae Attack! But the latter would have been more honest.