I see that A Deepness in the Sky, Vernor Vinge's prequel to A Fire Upon the Deep is coming out in February from TOR books. From Amazon: "Readers will marvel at Vernor Vinge's science fiction creation about Qeng Ho who awaits planet Arachna's awakening into a Golden Age of technology while other traders lurk nearby."
I didn't think I'd like this Qeng Ho angle. A primitive culture, trapped in the Slow Zone? What I forgot is that this was the perspective of the Beyond. From our POV the Qeng Ho is a super-advanced civilization, with technology comparable to the advanced travellers in Marooned in Realtime.
The prologue is online at http://www.tor.com/sampleDeepness.html. It's good.