Neal Asher’s Agent Cormac books are what you would get if you mixed Iain Banks Culture novels with Richard K Morgan’s Takashi Kovacs books. The Polity is a Human empire that is run by a series of AIs (they even have really big ships and AI drones). The polity novels I’ve read so far deal with the border (line of polity) between those that are part of the enlightened culture and human settlements on the outside (separatists). So a bit like Special Circumstances in the Banks books. The central character is Agent Ian Cormac, a hard hitting Earth Central Security agent who was for a long time wired into the AI grid (gridlinked) and has lost a bit of his humanity because of it.
I’m in the process of reading the series, having been impressed by the starting novel (I’m reading Line of Polity right now which I’ll review in due course). The violence isn’t as full on as in Richard Morgan’s books, but the main character doesn’t mind busting heads. The universe is reasonably hard SF, which you kinda expect now days with the crop of UK/Irish Sci-Fi writers that seem to be pumping out the best stuff. I won’t go into the plot as it is a little convoluted, but if you’ve found the Culture novels a little dry (though liked the background and idea) you’ll probably get a kick out of Gridlinked. The second novel makes a lot of references back to the first, so it is definitely a series rather than stand alone books with the same characters set in the same universe. There are currently five books in the Agent Cormac series and a couple of others that are set in the “Polity Universe”. I haven’t started on those, but I’ll get to them after I finish what has been published of the Agent Cormac sequence.