Book Reviews,  Inspirational Books

Review: Small Town Treasure

Five years ago, Emily Mannerson escaped small town living and moved to the big city where nobody knew “poor little Emily” and her miserable background. Now an attorney, Emily longs for what she left behind…her adopted mother and high-school sweetheart. Fire captain Matthew Westerly treasures his small town of Journey Creek and values faith, family, and friendships. When he rescues Emily from a horrific car accident, he’s determined to win her back and make up for the lost years. Can a big city girl and a small town boy discover their true treasure? Will they trust God to work a miracle?



Author Dora Hiers takes us back to her fictional town of Journey Creek in North Carolina to weave a short tale of romance that I like to call “clean steam.” It’s when your heart pounds and you’re whispering “Oohhh.” Yet it’s nothing your pastor’s spouse (or your pastor) couldn’t read.   

While there’s only been one woman for Matthew, she chose a different kind of life in a different kind of town. When Emily returns, he sets out to show her how much she missed.

Emily’s insecurities over her past caused her to leave Journey Creek and everyone she loves, including Matthew. Now that she’s back temporarily, she must decide if she can resume a life away from those who mean the most to her.

I found Small Town Treasure to be a gift of plentiful romance wrapped in a miniature package. Weighing in at not quite forty e-book pages, this story grabs you from the first paragraphs and keeps you interested to the last “perfect blessing.” I don’t read many short stories, but I did like the idea of sitting down for forty minutes and getting a romance “fix.”


A number of authors are writing short stories, particularly in e-book format, to go along with and promote their novels or to bridge the time gap between novel releases. As a reader does it appeal to you to read affordable shorts like this? Do you find, or do you think, it helps satisfy your longing for more creations by this author in the months between book releases?


Disclosure of Material Connection: This story came to me free from White Rose Publishing with the hope that I would mention it on this blog. There was no requirement for me to write a positive review and the opinions I have expressed above are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255.


As an author of heartwarming historical and contemporary romance, Sandra Ardoin engages readers with page-turning stories of love and faith. Rarely out of reach of a book, she's also an armchair sports enthusiast, country music listener, and seldom says no to eating out.

No Comments

  • Dora Hiers

    Wow! What a sweet review! Thank you, Sandy.

    Let me weigh in as a reader first. Sometimes, when I’m crunched for time or feeling frazzled, I like to go for a light read (always romance!), something that doesn’t take too much concentration or effort. Sometimes I’m satisfied when I reach the end, sometimes not. But shorts are cheap and don’t take long to read, so I haven’t invested much time or money.

    As an author, I spent a chunk of time writing this story. Even though it’s “mini” I didn’t want readers to feel short-changed or think that it was just fluff. That means developing your characters and your story just like you would a full-length book, but making every word count. If the premise intrigued you, would you be willing to plunk down $1 to try out a new author? I would. I’m hoping other people feel the same way.

    I’d like to hear from your readers on this issue, too.

    Glad you enjoyed SMALL TOWN TREASURE, Sandy. Thanks for featuring it today. 🙂

  • Donna Winters

    Thanks for this nifty review of a short ebook story. I’ve read a few of them by authors I’d not heard of before. I enjoyed them very much. With all the free content on Amazon Kindle I don’t know whether I’ll spend money to buy more from the short story authors I’ve read. Hey, I haven’t even spent money buying the next release from authors of full length books I’ve thought were “the best”. I’ve collected a huge library of free Kindle material and during the next few months I plan to keep checking out writers I haven’t read. If you want to get daily notices of free Kindle titles in your favorite subject categories, subscribe at Just thought I’d mention it for those unfamiliar. I’m not connected with them in any way except for my subscription that points me to the free and low cost titles.

    • Sandra Ardoin

      I know what you mean, Donna. My Kindle app is loaded with good (and free) books I haven’t gotten to yet. I think that’s one of the reasons I liked reading Dora’s short. It didn’t take long to read and satisfied my romance “sweet tooth.” 🙂 Another source of info for free books (novels and non-fiction) is Keiki Hendrix’s site

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