Hello ScottandCathy, I don't believe you can buy a 'bad' stove. Some are better for certain applications than others. but most if not all of the stoves currently in production are very good..
Your questions really apply to your home.. ['how does it perform for you?'] for some with a certain floor plan, or large poorly insulated home, the Alaska Hearth model would be too small or maybe in the wrong location in the house.. for others it may be perfect, and yet others way too much stove and heat.. It really depends on the home and it's location [weather] and the instalation..
My suggestion is to get the stove, get it installed,, and even though it is difficult to do with a hearth model,, install a barometric damper. MAKE SURE you seal off the fireplace damper around where the flue pipe goes through.. You do not want any coal exhaust fumes getting back into the house, or have heat being wasted by being pulled up the chimney around the flue pipe.
Be sure to install several CO [carbon monoxide] detectors.. the ones with a digital readout are best.. At least one in the room with the stove,, and at least one near the bedrooms.
Then read the directions,, and try a trial burn when you can.. then you will be ready for fall and winter...