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January 27, 1991|Charles Solomon

SLEEPING ARRANGEMENTS by Laura Cunningham (Plume: $8.95). Novelist/playwright Laura Cunningham offers a rollicking memoir of her improbable childhood in the Bronx during the late '40s. After her mother's premature death from cancer, Laura was raised by two eccentric uncles (her father remained a misty figure, and it's not clear if her parents ever married). Absent-minded, pious Uncle Gabe dreamed of writing Jewish love songs; Uncle Len, who liked to pretend he was a detective, wrapped himself in an aura of incognito mystery that no one could miss. These unlikely guardians soon were joined by Laura's equally dotty grandmother, a feminist philosopher manquee , in an indulgent, eccentric menage that featured orange- striped walls, parquet floors Uncle Gabe ruined by scouring with cleanser, and breakfasts of popcorn and tuna croquettes. The result is a loving souvenir of an odd but enviable childhood.

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