Enter Audible.com... Audible has been my commuting staple for the past year or so and suddenly 3000 pages didn't seem so daunting. I just finished the last book (Volume 3) and all told, it was probably 150 hours of listening. I paid $14.95 for each volume and it was well worth the price. The narrator was excellent and the collection kept my keen interest from start to finish.
I have to admit that I never knew the American Civil War was so enthralling and diverse. From the Ironclad naval battles to the long-odds cavalry raids of Nathan Bedford Forrest. Shelby Foote does a great job at bringing out the personalities of the great Civil War leaders and figures of the time. I've heard that being a Southerner himself, Foote tends to slant towards the Confederacy; but in my opinion this was not the case; I believe it was a fair and accurate account. This was a nation defining struggle of immense proportions and I learned a great deal about it from these books.
The only drawback that I feel I've encountered over the past few months listening, is that I now have a nagging desire to paint some American Civil War miniatures and replicate The Army of the Potomac and The Army of Northern Virginia on an epic scale. I might have to change the name of my blog to "ACW and WWII Central" :)