Hi. I was new to all of this not that long ago as well and have learned many things from these forums. I would suggest Specialized, Trek, Giant, Marin, Kona...they all make entry-level models(which is what I am assuming you are looking for....a good all around bike) in the $300 range give or take.
As far as a good bike rack, I'd suggest the Saris Bones 2 or 3 bike rack. In my opinion, it is the best rack on the market. Pricepoint sells the 2 bike model for about $85, which is a great deal!
Good luck and happy riding!