I'm a librarian who loves anime, manga, and reading a wide variety of genres.
I read this a bit too long after reading volume 6 – it took me some time to remember the characters and political situation. The most important things to understand were that 1) the Hong clan is very powerful, 2) Reishin is head of the Hong clan, and 3) Reishin loves his niece very much. Ryuki may be the emperor, but Reishin demonstrates quite well the necessity of keeping the Hong clan happy after Shurei is falsely accused.
I appreciated how honest Eigetsu was about his reasons for becoming a civil servant. He flat-out says he wants to be rich and powerful. He grew up poor, so he knows how much money can help those who have nothing. His basic goal is to help people, but he understands that just wanting to do something isn't always enough - you have to have enough funds to make things happen.
One thing in this volume that shocked me: I can't for the life of me remember if this was brought up in a previous volume, but at one point someone mentioned that
(Original review posted on A Library Girl's Familiar Diversions.)