A quick internet search revealed only one other copy on sale, for over £100. I decided that £89 would be a fair price and wrote a long description in English and German (courtesy of Google translate, I hasten to add).
I was confident that the book would sell within days.
After two weeks with no offers or enquiries, I decided to check if my Google-translated German had unwittingly come out as something like "All pages are made of jelly" because it didn't make sense that such a rare title hadn't sold. I checked, using different combinations of title, author and date.
The book had never gone on sale.
As it wasn't unusual for my software designers to mess things up, I decided that it would be quicker to list the book again, with a shorter, umlaut-free description. Once again, the book failed to appear on sale, even though titles that I'd logged before and after had uploaded without any problem.
Eventually, I discovered that many internet bookselling platforms like AbeBooks won't allow people to list titles about Hitler if they were written and published in Nazi Germany. Apparently, my book about motorways of the Third Reich had been automatically deleted.
This sort of censorship is both heavy-handed and inappropriate. I do not need the likes of eBay to protect me from the apparently seductive forces of Naziism or second guess why I am purchasing a particular title. I am a grown-up.
I thought that banning books was more Hitler's style.
In the meantime, here are some remarkable photographs from another book that I'm not allowed to sell: a 1936 hagiography called, simply, Adolf Hitler. If you're unable to look at the following images without succumbing to the urge to join an Aryan supremacist movement, please click here:
"Herr Hitler, instead of just waving at people, have you ever thought of trying a special salute like this?"
Adolf Hitler is an important historical document and if you want to know how a nation came to fall under the spell of a mass psychosis, it is important to read contemporary source material like this. Of course there will be people out there who are attracted to material of this kind for the wrong reasons, but that doesn't justify banning books.
There are occasions when censorship can be a necessary evil, to safeguard the civil liberties of the vulnerable. But do we really need to be protected from images like these? I don't think so.