Gr 3-6 According to this spoof on British upper-class eccentricities, there are plenty of closet Teddy bear lovers among the bluebloods. Bayard has been Sir Billy Browne-Browne's bosom bear since toddler days, and readers follow them through public school, World War II and Bayard's kidnapping and ransom. Du Bois's focus on small and large events creates intimacy, and the events are well-accompanied by ample full-page color illustrations of roly-poly Bayard and rosy Billy being fitted for identical suits, at school with five other boys and bears (the soon-to-be-famous Teddy-Bear Six) or pole-vaulting at the Olympics. Dry humor adds interest: ``Bayard was difficult to see because he was tucked under Billy's blazer. This made Billy look curiously lumpy for an athlete. . . .'' This silliness is justified in the final chapter, when Sir Billy (now ancient and lethargic) takes a vigorous stand on Bayard's worth as friend, matchmaker, companion and financial wizard. All told, this is rarified stuff. Because of the type of humor, built largely on the contrast between what one expects and what one sees, it's a witty, droll book for sophisticated middle-graders willing to make a leap of faith. Carolyn Noah, Worcester Public Library, Mass.