Personally, I don't trust any jacket except for leather. I've heard it all before, and now I can say I've been through it too. It's not hot here in the summer months, it's BRUTALLY, DISGUSTING, NASTY HOT from April-October. While a leather jacket isn't the best for sitting at red lights, or in stop and go traffic, they protect better than anything else. Period.
My motto is this: I'd rather sweat than bleed. So while technically, a mesh or textile jacket is better than nothing, they're still not nearly as protective as leather. And I've found that if I get too hot in my leather jacket, I just unzip it a little bit and get some extra air.
With all that said, I can only recommend a leather jacket.
Finding a good fitting jacket it tough. It seems that every brand fits differently, and also fitment is different inside the same brand. It's always best to try stuff on locally, and then buy online since it's usually cheaper on the web than in-store. Don't forget that if the jacket that arrives doesn't fit you like you hoped, you can return it and try a different size. Granted, that does take some time.
Locally, try Cycle Gear, Barney's, Manx, and even dealerships. Try every jacket on, take note of which brands or sizes fit you better than others.
Jinkster, I spent some time messing around on Google Maps today. I also like to check out www.motorcycleroads.com
to see what other routes riders may have posted.