The Long Shadow

Released in April 2020, The Long Shadow is a stand-alone psychological thriller with a perinatal psychologist heroine.

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Psychologist Isabel Harris has come to the outback town of Riley because her husband Dean is assessing the hospital—the hub of the community—with a view to closing it down. Isabel, mostly occupied with her toddler, will run a mother-baby therapy group. But on the first day she gets an anonymous note from one of the mothers: The baby killer is going to strike again. Soon.

Then a series of small harassments begins.

Is it an attempt to warn Dean off? Or could the threat be serious? A child was murdered in Riley once before.

As Isabel discovers more about the mothers in her group, she begins to believe the 25-year-old mystery of a baby’s death may be the key to preventing another tragedy.

Buist’s clinical and research work running attachment therapy based groups for perinatal women provides a background for the book. The attachment work, also an inspiration for the title given childhood scars often do have ramifications in adulthood, provides insight into five very different women from a small town, as well as their therapist; between them they have the answers that the psychologist heroine needs to piece together a 25-year-old murder mystery.


Professor Anne Buist (MMed 1992, MD 1999) is the Chair of Women’s Mental Health at the University of Melbourne, based at Austin Health, and has over 30 years clinical and research experience in perinatal psychiatry including being director of mother-baby units for much of this time. She continues to work with Protective Services and the legal system in cases of abuse, kidnapping, infanticide and murder.

Professor Buist also wrote psychological thrillers, the Natalie King, forensic psychiatrist, trilogy: Medea’s Curse, Dangerous to Know and This I Would Kill For. A stand-alone psychological thriller with a perinatal psychologist heroine, The Long Shadow, was released in April 2020.