This was a novel I read back in the 90s. The book was in English. The time is set in the future. The US (I think? Or an allegorical nation that mirrors the US) is fighting a war against (allegorical) Russia/China, and invents a mech suit (giant robot, Gundam-style) that needs a human host to interface with it.

Military/civilian adults are recruited and only certain adults are selected due to needing a specific genetic makeup to be compatible with the augmentation process for the mech suit's harness interface.

The protagonist is one of these chosen adults. The harness, as a side-effect, requires that the volunteer willingly give up their outermost consciousness (memories, too, I think), which is fed into a feedback loop-type of chip in the augmentations, thus avoiding going into insanity when interfaced with the mech suit.

I cannot recall the name of this book for the life of me! It's not the Pacific Rim series, and I don't think it was Gundam at all. These are adults who volunteer, not forced child soldiers like in Mobile Suit Gundam. It's not the Halo series either, as obviously this is a giant mech suit, not human-sized armor. It MIGHT be a Gundam series, but I don't recall one that was themed like this.

I recall a chapter/scene where the protagonist was having flashbacks of random memories he was trying to make sense of, but of course didn't know the people in the memories because of the inhibitor in the augmentations.


1 Answer 1


Unfortunately, I can't find any online summary or the like, but your description reminded me a lot of the movie Robot Jox, and it did indeed have a book published in the late 80's (which you could have read in the 90's).

The only summary says:

In a futuristic world, global wars have been replaced by single combats between colossal robotic war machines, creating a dangerous concentration of power in the hands of a few men and women

Amazon, Robot Jox by Robert Thurston

But I recall from the movie that they were giant robots (like Pac Rim Jaegers) and there was a harness that was tied to the pilot. I don't recall if they needed a specific genetic makeup for the piloting, but it wouldn't surprise me if that was added backstory in the book.

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