One benefit of eBooks is that you can purchase and read them anoynmously—there are no nosy clerks or shaming book covers to give away your terrible taste. This, as it turns out, is great news for Hitler's sales: the electronic version of Mein Kampf has become a surprise bestseller over the past year.
"These are things that people would be embarrassed to read otherwise," journalist Chris Faraone, who first noticed the trend, told ABC News. "Books that people would probably be a bit more embarrassed to read or display or buy in public, they are more than willing to buy on their Kindle, or iPads."
Faraone notes that eBooks led to a huge surge in sales for erotic novels like 50 Shades of Grey as well as more controversial books like Mein Kampf.
From Faraone's post on Vocativ:
For a year now, [Hitler's] magnum manifesto has loomed large over current best-sellers on iTunes, where at the time of this writing two different digital versions of Mein Kampf rank 12th and 15th on the Politics & Current Events chart alongside books by modern conservative powerhouses like Sarah Palin, Charles Krauthammer and Glenn Beck.
In fact, all seven of Beck's books trail Herr Hitler's nearly century-old tell-all, which consistently holds its own against new e-blockbusters like Game Change by John Heilemann and Mark Halperin, This Town by Mark Leibovich, and Nate Silver's The Signal and the Noise.
Versions of Hitler's prison screed also currently sit in third and fourth place on iTunes' Politics and Current Events bestseller list.
Of course, it's not clear if the book's popularity is because of a resurgence of academic curiosity or something more sinister.
"While the academic study of Mein Kampf is certainly legitimate, the spike in ebook sales likely comes from neo-Nazis and skinheads idolizing the greatest monster in history," World Jewish Congress CEO Robert Singer told ABC News.
But Michael Ford, the president of Elite Minds, an electronic publisher with a popular $0.99 version of Mein Kampf, disagrees.
"The popularity of the digital Ford translation of Mein Kampf has surged due to academic interest in the subject." Ford told ABC News in an email.
Who knows! The only thing for sure is that Mein Kampf is more popular now than most contemporary political books.
[Image via AP]