This is a decent space opera. It has some silly bits, but the overall plot is exciting. The thing that I found most interesting was the idea of the Polity. It felt kind of like Banks' Culture, but in the very early years. People talk about the way the Polity has given over all government and logistics to their AIs, but it seems like this is quite recent. This means they're a local superpower, but only local.
The novel is centered around attempts to get the Polity to step in and 'fix' a world that is ruled by a terrible theocracy, so it plays with these issues a lot. Good stuff.