In the house, however, it was a different story. For much of the book Mrs Simpson, a northern matriarch who might have been created by Alan Bennett for a League of Gentlemen spin-off, is portrayed as so extreme a character as to be almost comic, but there are darker implications. As adults, Catherine and her elder sister, Elizabeth, moved away for work, and Tricia, after travelling for a few years, returned to the farm. Her behaviour had been erratic since she was eight, but now she increasingly sought out conflict, accused friends of betrayal and lapsed into self-pity; her parents, though, simply refused to discuss or even acknowledge the problem, even when she began locking them in the house to protect them from imagined predators.
Her fatal decline and temporary incarcerations in a failing health system make for heart-rending reading. In a way, the real memorial for Tricia is the compassionate and beadily observed account of the Lancashire landscape.
Simpson is unafraid to plait the pastoral with the darker aspects of country life: she does not hide the ugly accoutrements of intensive farming, such as pig farrowing crates, and she shows how flashers and gropers sometimes took advantage of all three sisters when travelling alone in open country. That honesty underwrites what should be an enduring addition to writing about both mental illness and rural England.
And this is a very, very good thing.
Also very good: the food. Some dishes feel more Western the excellent beef tartare , and others more authentic the shaky shaky beef , but all of them have the same freshness you find in truly great Vietnamese food.
Everything on the menu also feels modern but clear about where it comes from - like if your Vietnamese grandmother was also a professionally-trained chef. Little Sister is the kind of casual but cool Vietnamese spot we wish we had closer to home. And if you live Downtown, consider yourself lucky too - they recently opened a second restaurant near Pershing Square, which we hear great things about.
And maybe start a petition for a third location.
Total must-order. The tartare is a bit spicy, but still really fresh, and it comes with a cute little quail egg on top and cassava chips to scoop it all up with. Basically, a very fancy chips and dip situation. Not amazing dumplings, but definitely not terrible dumplings. Like spring rolls, but made with rice paper instead of egg wrappers, so they feel a lot lighter.
Johnny's Little Sister
They come with a bunch of lettuce to wrap them in, so you could convince yourself that these are a healthy version of spring rolls. They might not really be that, but they are delicious. A lunch-only thing, and well worth ordering.
A fancy way to say stir-fried egg noodles with pork, but these are also fancier than what you get from your local take-out spot. Instead of a random assortment of vegetables and minced pork, there are crunchy green beans and shredded confit pork, all topped with a perfectly runny egg. That crust is slightly spicy, and surrounds perfectly moist chicken. Get this. Home Cities Pick the perfect spot for every situation. Travel Guides Plan your trip and eat like locals.
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Visit website. Call restaurant. Monday 5pmpm. Tuesday 5pmpm.