On May 23, 2009, at 10:52 PM, Rick Walker wrote:
Manifold: Space, and also, Manifold: Time by Stephen Baxter (good mind-bending stuff)
Seeker - Jack McDevitt (not Space Opera, more like detective mystery set in future)
Wheelers by Ian Stewart and Jack Cohen (nice in system sprawling stuff, quite fun)
Oldie Goldies, in case you missed em:
Dan Simmons - Hyperion
David Brin - Startide Rising, and also, Earth
Gregory Benford - Galactic Center series ( I would start with Great Sky River read thru to final books then jump back to beginning of series.)
Michael Swanwick -Stations of the Tide
Vernor Vinge - most of his stuff interesting.
Robert Jordan - Wheel of Time, Book one is Eye of the World (If you have not tried them, really well imagined stuff)
Stephen Donaldson - Lord Foul's Bane (first 3 books of the Covenant series are an interesting take on fantasy genre)
Have a splendid trip and tour.