I'm trying to find the name of this ~mid 80's Sci-fi.

The protagonist is a male human from earth equipped with a brain implant to talk with his sentient AI ship and so it can read the sensor implants he has. He can plug in via hardwire at the base of his skull for full information connection (see everything the ship sees). He's also been given training so he knows how to do whatever he needs (knife fight, evade & escape, etc) and is strong without looking it.

Earth got into an interstellar war with her colonies and lost (nuked back to the stone age) leaving the scout on his mission with no option to quit, as the AI will set of the explosive in his head if he does. The AI/Spaceship seems to know the war was lost but won't quit but might be looking for an out that would allow it to self-destruct while of course also blowing up our hero.

They stumble across a planet with strange gravity anomalies which they go to investigate. Turns out when the planet got nuked in the war some people developed a genetic mutation which allows them magic-like powers.

The story is him trying to figure out what's going on with these gravitational anomalies and not killing lot of people in the process but without disobeying the AI so much it decides he's trying to betray the cause so it kills him.

Any clues on the title?

  • We have a winner. That's the one. Thanks so much. – gt7599a Jun 8 '17 at 0:42

This sounds like The Cyborg and the Sorcerers book one of the "War Surplus" series by Lawrence Watt Evans

"The Cyborg and the Sorcerors" book cover

The cyborg code-named "Slant" was sent out as an Independent Reconnaissance Unit during an interstellar war between Earth and its colonies. The fighting ended three hundred years ago, but Slant's computer does not admit this - he is compelled to carry on as if the war were still raging.

Then he comes across a planet where his sensors register "gravitational anomalies." The computer interprets these as enemy weapons research.

The local inhabitants call the anomalies "magic."

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  • Note also that there is a sequel to this as well, The Wizard and the War Machine. – mwigdahl Oct 18 '18 at 16:39

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