Charles Bear, vacationing in the woods, goes off one morning ""to find out about those wild bears,"" and though he hears a lot of unsettling noises on the way, the bear he meets lives in a house, has a telescope, takes lessons from his cousin, and gets along nicely without the advantages of civilization--a word Charles interprets as being polite and knowing the formal names for bookish subjects. Willard Bear also responds evasively to Charles' pushy questions about wild bears and whether he is one, and their conversations suggest that Charles has something to learn from his new friend's natural wisdom. The format, short sentences and naive drawings, in turn suggests a very young story featuring an endearing little animal character. But in effect Charles has no personality at all--only an uneasy curiosity about the woods and a rude complacency about his superior schooling; as for Adamson's philosophy of education, about all that comes through is Willard's sensible reminder that the rules are different in the woods. And Charles, it seems, remains unaffected even by this. Off target.