The black man's burden has rarely seemed heavier than in this novel which is a paradigm of suburban prejudice by an author who has apparently never heard that black is beautiful. But then neither are any of the other characters whether lush pink or greed grey. Actually this is two stories and they coincide. There's the liaison, between Claire, the preacher's daughter and Mark, a black ghetto child from the city, and their harassed romance and marriage; and then there's the tale of the townspeople rallying against, a Negro family which has just settled in. Amid the shouts of ""Torch the nigger out,"" Claire's boss (whom she trusted) decides to expose her relationship with Mark as an added hate incentive. One can barely hear the plot above the din but eventually the Negroes are, only temporarily, burned out; Claire's boss has sold his real estate holdings to a black company out of spite and Mark is thinking about the ""golden children"" of the future. . . with dark hair of course. It's a toss-up as to which is more banal, the plot or the prose.