"When religion goes bad...
When CHERUB uncovers a link between eco-terrorist group Help Earth and a wealthy religious cult known as The Survivors, James Adams is sent to Australia on an infiltration mission.
It's his toughest job so far. The Survivors' outback headquarters are completely isolated and the cult's brainwashing techniques put James under massive pressure to confirm.
This time, James isn't just fighting terrorists. He's got to battle to keep control of his own mind."
I'm sorry, but The Survivors (the religious group) reminds me of Scientology. There is something about those Scientology articles (all made famous thanks to Holmes-Cruise split) that makes the group sound so much like The Survivors. Thanks to all those critics talking about brainwashing, I wonder if the author intended to... I should stop right here. (Bad girl!)
Divine Madness is really good though. They might have little brainwashing here and there, but it is mostly interesting, not terrible. (Happy zombies. Think of that). I love how the author introduces little topics that are so open to further research! I'm so looking up brainwashing on Wikipedia. (Okay, that is a bit weird, too. I'll stop talking about that). The book is good. There are some really good parts, but I'm not going into them. (Spoilers, remember?)
This time, the target is Help Earth, which has relationships to The Survivors (a crazy religious cult that shamelessly uses brainwashing as a tool to convert assets). James Adams must find the ties that bind those two lunatic groups together. Oh, and the author now labeled Adams, James Adams as a pervert, a peeping Tom. Truthfully, that bothers me very much. Guy could be a future serial killer for all I know. At least, he doesn't have violent tendencies. Oh, wait. He might be a future serial killer. Hmm... But he didn't get off when he killed that guy in the previous books, so maybe not.
The conflict is more exciting than previous books (prequels). In some ways, it is like the Criminal Minds' episode of that crazy religious cult. They do blow themselves up in the end. I don't need to tell you any more than that. Spoilers. Blowing themselves up is already a bit portion of the ending (endgame). And just from my hint about the Criminal Minds' episode, you can probably guess the ending and the fate of The Survivor's children and adults.
The way Muchamore wrote this book just reminds me of James Bond. No further ways can I explain this. It just James Bond-ish. Teenage James Bond.
Overall, Divine Madness is better than the previous books. It is something that hasn't appeared in a long time (of the series). There is more action, the characters are more thought-out, and I enjoyed the book very much. Other than the pervert (Peeping Tom) part.
I definitely did not enjoy that part. Too weird. And makes me think twice about using public bathrooms, showers, restrooms, etc. (Even the hotel room!)
Rating: Four out of Five