The writing is not good, continuity problems are consistent, and the plot wobbles all over the place. Chatfield's strengths from the earlier books - creativity and individualized character-are mostly absent.
Here's a sample of nonsensical writing:
"Like a planet forming from the dust of space, the core compressed from a softball to a grapefruit and smaller"
This does not make any sense. It describes an accretion disc. Then it describes *shrinking* from a softball (2.5 inches in diameter) to a grapefruit (4-6 inches in diameter) and caps it off with a clumsy closer ("and smaller"). Elsewhere in this segment, the writer splashes between metric and imperial units of measure, as a radius increases from two to six to ten feet, then expands to two meters (or 6.2 feet). This is not an isolated example.
Some of the imagery is better ("Alva cast a beautiful sight: a land of stone and wooden houses intermixed with parks ...") but there is a lot of garbage.
A related problem is the amount of repetition: the villains discuss each attack multiple times, adding little or nothing with each description. Some quests or concepts get discussed multiple times within a handful of pages. The committees go over the same issues. Worse yet, some of these events clearly occur out of order - a main character is talking to others in one realm in between battle scenes he is participating in, which are in a different realm. The whole "medical approach to cultivation as a brilliant innovation" subplot was already thoroughly explored in previous books, but we go over all of that again - with some of the exact same techniques. That's unnecessary filler, and it actually hurts continuity.
This could be removed with more work with beta readers and editors, but its apparent that they were barely used: there are beta reader comments and highlights that are still visible in the book, and the large number of problems show that many of the beta readers are really just early access - they aren't actually reading with a critical eye towards improvement.
Enemies are magically more powerful and wealthier than before, rendering prior gains meaningless. Every step forward results in another step back. The numbers thrown around get bigger, but not in a way that matters. The last book closed with what was supposed to be a pretty crippling blow to certain enemies. Nothing came of that. Some plot lines are apparently abandoned.
It's simply not satisfying to read, and the action that makes this series enjoyable takes way too long to get going. Erik no longer focuses on his unique battle style - a climatic fight scene involves him and a bad dude yelling "explosion" and "spike" at one another like that YouTube video of a larper shouting "fireball". In short, this has the same problem that took off in the last few books: a ton of meetings and committees about managing a country/business/city that were written by someone with no management experience and no research into the process.
But the real, insulting capper?
This is book is titled "The Seventh Realm, Part One." In every other entry into the series, the main characters explored at least part of the titular realm. In this one, they don't even make it there. In fact, most of the book appears to happen in the first and fourth realms, in well-trod over settings.