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Starbucks free ebook offer irks some customers

Starbucks expanded their free "Pick of the Week" itunes offerings this week, putting up their first ebook, Erin Morgenstern's "The Night Circus." Only some customers didn't know the book was only an "extended sample."

Starbucks expanded their free "Pick of the Week" iTunes offerings this week, putting up their first ebook, Erin Morgenstern's "The Night Circus."

Only it appears some didn't read the fine print of the offer.

"Starbucks is featuring an extended sample of the book The Night Circus from Erin Morgenstern," said a blog post about the promotion at Starbucks' website.

After the offer debuted at Starbucks stores this week, customers reported that when they downloaded the book, they were given 330 out of 400 pages with the last page directing them to purchase the complete book.

"The 'Pick of the Week' card certainly does not say anywhere that it's just a sample. This is very disappointing..." wrote one customer on Starbucks' website.

"i agree. i was very excited to see this today and now I'm disappointed too. I understand it it's only a sample, but the card should say that. it's very misleading!!" wrote another person.

The offer on the card does not mention that the book is only an extended sample. The card shows an image of the book with the text "Free with the code on back." Text on the back of the card deals with offer expiration and instructions to download the book.

Starbucks began the "Pick of the Week" program offering free iTunes music and video downloads on cards available at Starbucks stores. This is the first "extended sample" of an ebook offered as part of the program.

By JAMIE GRISWOLD, MyNorthwest.com Editor

About the Author


Whether it's floating on Green Lake, eating shrimp tacos at Agua Verde, or taking weekend drives out to the Cascades, she loves to enjoy the Pacific Northwest lifestyle as much as humanly possible.

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