Mother Bear let Nubber do anything he liked...almost. 'Don't go near the Middle Wood,' she said."" Nubber, supported by his ability to create encouraging rhymed proverbs on the spur of the moment to suit his whims, tried anyway. The breakthrough into the forbidden territory eventually came when Nubber sneaked off in the middle of the night. The mysterious-looking darkened forest makes him enter warily, but the night time creatures help him out, and Nubber Bear gets his just desserts--a chunk of honey comb...and a spanking from Mother Bear. Nubber Bear's sense of guilt/enjoyment at doing the forbidden will be easy for pre-schoolers to share, although they may be a little confused about why Mother Bear was so adamant on the subject. Duvoisin's illustrations are among his most enjoyable. Green and black drawings alternate with four color ones, which capture especially well the combination of fear and attraction that the little bear feels for the woods at night. The book is one small pleasure children can have which won't be frowned on by their mothers.