A new look at one of the North Country's Coldest Cases
James, I like the connection in the title to the book in the car, which is a pretty pithy irony. I think you should search for something that makes that connection a little more succinctly. "Perilous" is too culturally burdened a word without a more specific connection to her somehow. So, lets see ... some kind of reference to the book that is also a reference to her ... well, the difference between her and the people whose stories were told in the book is that they were all found dead whereas she is not found. To wit: they were embarking on something toward their fates (i.e., dead) that was "Not Without Peril," while she embarked on that strange and mysterious day toward her fate (unknown and bizarrely mysterious) that is - nonetheless "Not Without Clues." In the telling of the story, the connection to the book and the irony of its existence in the car would surface for the reader. ~ John Green
You will need a subtitle if you choose "All American Girl." I agree, "Perilous" isn't quite there yet. Keep thinking . . . . .
too bad krakauer used "into thin air"All-American Girl seems much better than perilous
Perilously Perfect: The mysterious disappearance of Maura Murray
I think All American Girl is a great title for the book.
Yes. All-American Girl is spot on. Obviously with some kind of subtitle like "The Unsolved/Mysterious Disappearance of Maura Murray" or whatever.I think AAG is more evocative than Perilous, and easier to remember than either Perilous or any of the titles suggested by Fumero. It's also more pointed and specific than any of these vague, theme-oriented names. I also like that AAG signposts Maura's character and personality, which doubtless will end up being the true key to this mystery. (I hope it will be a focus of your book, accordingly.)
If you're going to go the more bland route, I would suggest a few titles that aren't perfect but more to the point:Into the NightInto the Dark NightLost HighwayWreckless: The Mysterious Disappearance of Maura MurrayThe Darkest RoadSomething Ominous (a nod to 20/20 episode)Being a screenwriter, I'm a little picky about titles, as they have to be more specific I think, whereas true crime books you can be a little more loose with it. Still, All American Girl is about as overused as titles like Guilty Until Proven Innocent, Without A Trace, Vanished, and so on. You need something haunting, that immedietly grabs people and also perfectly sums up this case in 2 or 3 words. The titles of your other books are pretty good, so why stop there?
I like Wreckless: The Mysterious Disappearance of Maura Murray. It's proven that she got into 2 "wrecks" and possibly a 3rd. Plus her behavior did seem to spiral out of control before her disappearance.
I like Perilous, but it's very nuanced. A lot of people won't be clever enough to get it. I also like Reckless; it's a play on words, and it fits Maura's personality to a T. I don't like All American Girl because it lacks imagination and I don't think it fits Maura. I mean, how many American girls go to West Point and display a serious drinking problem at such a young age?
I like "Wreckless" too! Or maybe something with the word Phantom" in it? Just some kind of play on words.
"Maura is Missing"
I like 'American Girl' since that is how her family desperately painted her life before the darker side like her credit card theft & drinking & driving came out.