A quick recommendation
A quick recommendation - I haven't really been following this thread, but I'm in the middle of reading The Hard SF Renaissance anthology I recently purchased from Fictionwise, and it's an excellent primer to a very wide variety of sf over the past couple of decades that's also very much not in the Baen style of things.
I'd been balking from buying it at Fictionwise because it was just really expensive, but with the current 40% micropay offer it suddenly looked very worthwhile, and I picked another couple of books up along with it.
I'd go for that if anything while the sale is on. Plus, it's huge - on my Sony Reader with fairly narrow page margins, it comes to nearly three and a half thousand pages of text.