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Rodale Books / Scam

1 Dallas, TX, United States Review updated:

I ordered a book from Rodale Books a couple of months ago, came as requested and I paid for the book. Today I received two (not just one, but two) unsolicited books! I did not want the books, did not order the books and sure as heck am not going to pay for the stupid books. Unfortunately, you can return the unsolicited books by printing a return label (generic) from online and PAY THE SHIPPING!! I'm not paying the idiots for anything. I am contacting an attorney if I give the run around when calling the only number found online tomorrow. If there are any problems as have been reported all across the internet, I will be contacting the PA Attorney General's office, the USPS and I will inquire with the Texas Attorney General's office as well!

I see that there was a class action lawsuit started clear back in 2005 for this very thing! This apparently is not anything new for these people.

Do NOT buy anything from them. Once they get your information, you are unsuspectingly in deep with no way out. RUN AWAY!!

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  • Bl
      14th of Jan, 2009
    0 Votes

    Rodale Books is also the publishers of Men's Health Magazine, Women's Health Magazine and several other magazines. They do this same scam to their magazine subscribers. Sending unsolicited books and invoices for same and sticking them with the time and expense to ship them back in a timely manner. The label they supply online for that purpose is useless because it specifies a Book Rate which the USPS no longer even uses. Their fax number is always busy (I tried faxing them my invoice for my charges for the time and expenses their little stunt cost me). I canceled my magazine subscription with them, have Used CERTIFIED Priority mail to return their junk, and will be stripping all the postage-paid cards their magazines were loade with and dropping them blank in the mail to them. My next chore will be to file a formal complaint with my state's state attorney general's office, and the USPS Post Master. For good measure I am working on a Blog post to relate my experience more broadly. Maybe a trip to the local news stand for some more postage paid post cards to mail 'em.

  • Tc
      26th of Jan, 2009
    +2 Votes

    I got a magazine subscription as a gift and after the subscription had ended, I got a box of 3 books. I had no idea why I got them or who they were from. It was right before Christmas so I figured they were Christmas gifts. When my brother came to visit he was reading them and I told him he could have them. A month later I get a bill from Rodale for $50.90 for the books. It states that I had 21 days from the time I received the books to return them in order to avoid having to pay for them. I called the number on the bill (8008206077) and stated that I got a bill for books I did not order and I would like them to remove me from their list so that I no longer receive books or bills. The agent informed me that when I subscribed to the magazine I elected to have some books sent to me to preview (I later confirmed with the person who bought me the subscription that they did not elect to have books sent to me). I told the agent that I never elected to receive any books and the books did not come with any paper work saying who they were from, no account information was included, and nothing was included that indicated I needed to return the books if I did not wish to keep them. I told her that I no longer had the books so I can not return them and I am not going to pay for them because I did not order them. She said that just this one time she would cancel the bill, as if she was doing me a favor. RODALE- Do me a real favor and don't send me anything I did not order!

  • Tc
      26th of Jan, 2009
    0 Votes

    A note on getting in touch with their 800 number (8008206077)- I called and hit '0' to talk to an agent and was told that their call volume was too high and they hung up on me. I tried back 10 minutes later and got through.

  • Ro
      7th of Feb, 2009
    0 Votes

    My story is the same. I hate this company with a passion. They sent me unsolicited books. I haven't talked to a customer service rep yet. I don't have time for this garbage.

  • Me
      8th of Feb, 2009
    0 Votes

    I am done with Men's health. I get books in the mail that are absolute garbage and now i have to return them at my time and expense? I saw the one book at a Borders outlet for five dollars!! Trash. Absolute trash. Times are hard fellas, I have seen other decent companies pulling shady maneuvers.

  • Ja
      9th of Feb, 2009
    0 Votes

    I can't even believe this crap! My story is the same. I have a subscription to Womens Health and right around christmas received a packet of books, and a work out DVD. I thought I had gotten a Christmas present and opened it only to find an invoice. I packaged it up, sent it back and now I am getting an invoice in the mail saying they have not received payment- after I sent eveything back!! Then when I called the 800 # it said due to high call volume they could not answer my call!! I am on hold as we speak! What can we do to them?

  • Jo
      11th of Feb, 2009
    0 Votes

    I contacted Rodale December 3rd, of 2008, reference the books that were mailed to me without my authorization nor did I ask for them. The books were mailed back to them as per their instructions, however, I am still receiving bills for the books I hand delivered to my post man to send back. Even told him I am canceling all magazines.
    I have asked the Prevention Magazine, that I want them out of my life and I will never, ever buy anything from them, nor any other magazine.
    All of this has been very frustrating and I want to be taken off their list as well.

    What ever connection Rodale has with prevention I feel it was wrong on their part to automatically send books I did not authorize them to send.
    I took time out of my busy schedule to do the right thing and send them back, now they need to do the right thing and take me off the list. I did my job, now I want them to do theirs. And yes, it was around Christmas time.

    Just the other day I received this e mail from Rodale:

    As mentioned in the reminder letter sent to you, your previous purchase entitled you to a preview of this year’s edition. Please be assured we have cancelled that program effective today.
    Return shipments take approximately 3 - 4 weeks for us to receive and process. As of this date, we do not have a record of your return.

    This was my reply:

    Entitled me? Or forced me. It takes 3 -4 weeks for you to receive and process and as of this date you do not have a record of my return? I hand delivered it to my United States Post Man Wednesday, December 3rd, 2008. It's been 10 weeks today the books were mailed back and you still do not have any record of my return? The company e mailed me a return label as she said that is what I had to do. I put all the paper work in the box as instructed. I went on the net today and found I am not alone in this manner. I did a copy and paste to this e mail of just a few comments. I did get information as what I can do if I continue to get a bill. Not only do I have the United States Post Man remembering me handing the package to him I have the web site of all the negative feed back.

    Not only should they be turned over to the BBB, Attorney General, and Senator they should be exposed to the News on ABC, CBS or whatever news channel.
    Why should I pay $50.90 for books I returned and pay for poor record keeping this company evidently has?

  • Pe
      12th of Feb, 2009
    0 Votes

    I was upset too when i receive these books after my men's health subscription too (because I never asked to have them shipped). I too felt wronged because I thought i had to pay for the shipping to send it back to them. Wrote an angry email to this address, got this response... hopefully problem resolved. Hope this helps others so they don't have to pay anything out of their own pocket.

    Thank you for contacting Rodale. When you ordered our Men's Health magazine, it stated that you would receive this book shipment each year. As mentioned in the reminder letter sent to you, your previous purchase entitled you to a preview of this year’s edition. We apologize if you were unaware of that. Please be assured we have cancelled that program effective today.

    Below is an attachment that you can open to print the postage-paid return label for this order. Please make sure to place your packing slip in the package, so that we may properly credit your account when the order is received. It may take up to two weeks for us to receive the order. If you receive another bill in the interim please disregard it.


    We will take your name, mailing address, and email address off our mailing lists immediately. It will take approximately 3 - 4 weeks before all of the company branches will receive your cancellation from our mailing lists.

    We apologize if we caused any inconvenience. For more information regarding the Rodale Privacy Policy, please go to:, 6597, 8-114, 00.html. If you have any further questions, please feel free to contact us at the email address below.

    Thank you for contacting Rodale.

    Best of Health!
    Rodale Books Customer Service
    For the newest health and fitness information please visit or

    * Please return entire Email when responding *


  • Em
      12th of Feb, 2009
    0 Votes

    FURIOUS! I am located in Vancouver, Canada and am currently dealing with this exact issue. I purchased a one year subscription of Women's Health magazine, nowhere did it state that I would be receiving unsolicited items in the mail and the be charged for them at a later date. Rodale tried to mail me a hardcover book, but we never picked it up from the post office. The post office automatically mails it back to the sender in those instances. I recommend everyone do the same (if possible).

    My boyfriend and I submitted our experience with the website [redacted]. It appears that many others are dealing with this scam both in Canada and the United States.

    According to

    "Rodale publishes some of the best-known health and wellness lifestyle magazines, including Men's Health, Prevention, Women's Health, Runner's World, Best Life, Bicycling, Running Times, Organic Gardening, and Mountain Bike. "

    Please keep those magazine and book titles in mind and avoid signing up with them for anything.

    It is sad that this is the tactic they are resorting to. It seems to be problem for many. The best solution that came to our mind is to start a blog, website or petition that will help put Rodale's scam to an end.

    I would post my email here publicly, but am so tired of spammers targeting my email, my home address and my telephone number.

    But I will be contacting people in my area who can help with this problem. Rodale just sent me my second notice requesting payment for a hardcover book I never ordered.

    Best of luck getting these guys.

  • St
      22nd of Apr, 2009
    0 Votes

    I too received this 21-day "preview" unsolicited. I received a Men's Health subscription as a gift and am now getting a $49.90 bill for these dumb books. So I just got off the phone with these idiots and supposedly everything is cancelled. I told them to remove me from any/all mailings or clubs and that I cannot be held liable for a purchase someone else made on my behalf. He tried to tell me I 'had' to send the books back. I told him I don't 'have' to do anything and that after seeing the books don't fit in my mailbox, I don't 'have' to make a special trip to the Post Office and will be considering these books a gift. If they chose to send anything else, I will also consider it a gift until they get tired of losing money on me. I cancelled my Men's Health subscription, which they refused to pro-rate a refund, so all the more reason to refuse to spend any effort to return these books. What a scam. I tried to yell at him about how annoying this has been and he just kept saying "Thank you for your input" and ended the call.

  • Mr
      6th of May, 2009
    0 Votes

    I was being bullied by these fools for about 6 months. I yelled at them and the india collection agency they sent after me. After telling them I had contacted the Ohio State Attorney General (which I had) I NEVER got a single call again. It's been 7 months since their last call. DON'T GET BULLIED----BE A JERK!!!

  • Da
      12th of May, 2009
    0 Votes
    Rodale Books - Unordered books
    16 Belanger court
    New York
    United States

    My 81 year old mother keeps getting books she did not order she sends them back & they send more PLEASE stop sending them to her it is so hard for her to get around.
    Why don't you just stop sending them to her and make it easy for the older folks out there.

  • Ty
      23rd of May, 2009
    0 Votes

    Interesting. I've subscribed to Men's Health for five years now and have never received unordered books. My only complaint with them is they overcharge for their books. I've ordered 3 books from them (great books actually) and realized I paid probably double what they're worth.

  • Ja
      30th of May, 2009
    0 Votes

    My daughter just received an unsolicited book from this company. She has never subscribed or ordered any books or magazines from this company. Interesting part is the email address they have for her is a bogus address she uses for My Space. I've know about this company for a total of 10 minutes and I already hate them!!!

    Unless they ship me return envelope they won't be getting their book back and I will contact our state's attorney.

  • Sg
      30th of May, 2009
    0 Votes

  • Za
      30th of Jun, 2009
    0 Votes

    Stupid me. I agreed to receive a book that was completely different than the one I received today. Now it looks like I suscribrd to a series. I am 55 years old and way to late to worry about building firm ABS or firm ###. Trying to contact them is useless. If anyone has any luck contacting them, let me know. I am afraid they will send me more using my credit card and no I can't cancel.

  • Su
      4th of Jul, 2009
    0 Votes

    I have had similar experiences with this horrible company ! I also have had problems with Readers Digest, sending me their magazine ( unrequested by me ) and their insistence that I MUST have subscribed or I wouldn't have received it... I had to get good and mad before any one would fix the problem ! What is going on with these companies... ? !!!

  • Fr
      15th of Jul, 2009
    +1 Votes

    There has been some class actions with regards to this business tactic by Rodale. The 3rd District ruled that individuals do not have a private right to sue for receiving unordered books. Which means that there may not be any more class action lawsuits in the future. But what is important is that people understand what Rodale is doing.

    They are sending you free books as a gift, of which you have NO obligation to pay. They send you bullying letters and fake credit reporting letters to scam you into paying for something that they gave to you for free. Call them and demand that they stop sending you abusive letters and mention that you are aware of the past class actions against their company and they'll back off.

    This is probably the most disgusting use of the law as a sword instead of a shield that I have seen in a long time. As much as I enjoy Mens Health, I am going to cancel my subscription because of their involvement with such a sleezeball company.

  • So
      22nd of Jul, 2009
    0 Votes

    Unbelievable. They scammed my 89 year old mother. I made a complaint with PA BBB and PA Atty General. I've called Rodale twice. They are hounding her with a bill for junk she didn't order. All of this started because I ordered a subscription to Prevention Magazine for her. The customer service rep tried to tell me that when I ordered the magazine I also agree to take a book order, he said it was in "fine print." I know this is not true as I read ALL fine print and am very careful when ordering things. I don't know why any reputable magazine would be affiliated with Rodale.
    Please make a complaint to Pennsylvania BBB and to the Pennsylvania Attorney General. Only then will they possibly change their tactics.

  • No
      27th of Jul, 2009
    0 Votes

    SAME STORY! i just subscribed to mens health and i got these 2 books in the mail so i opened it assuming it was a free gift.. and there was an invoice attached.. i call and they say oh i'm sorry please mail them back to us... But now i need to spend time and money for shipping it back to them for something i never requested in the first place!

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