RAINBOWLAND by William E. Hegner

RAINBOWLAND

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KIRKUS REVIEW

A fairly close switch of Rainbowland for Florida's Disneyland, and if you wish to read some facets of Walt Disney's character through Jut Diamond's, well, you can, but that's not Hegner's real game. Diamond or Disney, the deeper fires of the hero-entrepreneur are missing, the rich kinks and layerings of a grotesque stunted with childhood emotions. Anyway, the novel drives toward some final images of strong irony, a kind of Oedipus in Disneyland, but they have only a suggestion of poetic force. The story: Jut Diamond, child of scare artists, grows up and becomes a real-estate con artist who builds phony developments and disappears with the loot. At last he goes legit, more or less, buys up big acreage in Florida, and erects Rainbowland, a baby-eyed hymn to innocence. In making his childhood feelings concrete, he loses his manliness (or at least his sexuality) to make-believe, then revamps an ""adopted"" son into Prince Charming, his heir. But when Diamond falls on fire from a flaming helicopter and survives as a neuter, and the prince makes out juicily with a queen named Eden, well, you're never really zapped--or ever ravished with rainbow glitter.

Pub Date: June 1st, 1977
Publisher: Playboy