Fillmore and Geary Take Off!: The Adventures of a Robot Boy and a Boy Boy

Overview

Fillmore and his robot pal Geary are best friends and expert inventors. So it's only natural that when they decide they need a dog, they work together to build one. But Sbot (short for Super Dog Robot) doesn't turn out quite the way they planned!
So build your own rocket (punch-out included), fasten your seat belts, and join Fillmore, Geary, and Sbot on a hilarious intergalactic adventure that's sure to rate high on every kid's Read-O-Meter. ...
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Fickling, Phillip 2004 Hard cover Illustrated. Very good in very good dust jacket. Audience: Children/juvenile.

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Overview

Fillmore and his robot pal Geary are best friends and expert inventors. So it's only natural that when they decide they need a dog, they work together to build one. But Sbot (short for Super Dog Robot) doesn't turn out quite the way they planned!
So build your own rocket (punch-out included), fasten your seat belts, and join Fillmore, Geary, and Sbot on a hilarious intergalactic adventure that's sure to rate high on every kid's Read-O-Meter.

Fillmore the boy and Geary the robot, who live on Planet Zada, take their robotic dog Sbot to other planets so that he can learn to act like a real dog.

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Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher
"Fillmore and Geary borrow Uncle's spaceship and, with capable Sbot at the controls, zoom off for encounters with dino-sized pups on one planet, spike-collared wolf-dogs on another, and similar misadventures. Arriving on Earth (New York City), they find proper exemplars at last--then realize just in time that a spaceship pilot makes a better pet than a tail-chasing drooler any day. Even confirmed dog-lovers, human or otherwise, will undoubtedly agree." -Kirkus Reviews
Colleen R. Cahill
This is a book that can be enjoyed by many ages. There are different levels to the text and pictures, with plenty of adventure, surprises and laughs for everyone. The illustrations by Fickling are delightful, starting with the blueprints for Sbot and filling the book with colorful and imaginative additions to the story. The Invention Room is only mentioned in the text, but the drawing of the Bod-i-Matic, Leg-O-Lator, and RobOhead make the invention of Sbot seem even more real. Various highlights in the pictures are labeled, giving the reader more information, which is certain to stir up intriguing points of discussion.

I am so delighted with this book I am going to give it to all the children on my holiday gift list. And after their parents read it, I expect to get some appreciative thanks for a picture book with something for them, too. If you want to hook a young reader onto science fiction, you cannot do better than give them Fillmore & Geary Take Off!
Fast Forward Book Review, December 2004

Publishers Weekly
Flashy but insubstantial, these digitally rendered "adventures of a robot boy and a boy boy" star Fillmore, a fireplug-shaped kid who resembles a Lego toy, and Geary, his silver-blue robot counterpart. They live on Planet Zada and, according to the mildly smug text, "had everything boys need. What they didn't need was a pet. So... that's what they wanted." At the pet shop, the two consider slimy space creatures, but a Lassie broadcast from Earth convinces them to invent a dog; they craft a Super Dog Robot, nicknamed "Sbot," on an assembly line. The robotic pooch's green lop-ears and angular brushed-copper body resemble a beagle's, but when he acts more like a scholar than a pet (he reads a book titled Howl), he and his inventors embark on an interplanetary quest for dogs to imitate. In Shulman and Fickling's (previously paired for How I Built Rusty) glossy spreads, details are labeled a la Richard Scarry; on Earth, corny Internet-popup labels identify Sbot's wagging tail and a fire hydrant. Dog lovers may feel insulted that a dial on Sbot's head turns him from "Wow" (smart) to "Bow-wow" (dopey), even though the boys have second thoughts and restore his intelligence. Slick art and personality-free characters make this tale the equivalent of space junk food. A snap-together cardboard rocket is tucked into the flap. Ages 4-8. (Oct.) Copyright 2004 Reed Business Information.
School Library Journal
Gr 1-3-Fillmore, a human, and his robot friend, Geary, live on Planet Zada. Deciding that they want a pet, they head for the Invention Room and build a dog. However, their creation acts like a robot/boy, since he has never seen a real canine. Fillmore, Geary, and Sbot then set off in a rocket to visit the five planets in their system that have dogs. The first four are a disaster, but they find "the right kind of dogs" on Earth (labeled "the blue planet"), only to discover that they're not what they wanted after all. The computer-generated cartoons are perfect for the narrative's futuristic feel. Many of the items on the pages are labeled, giving readers additional text and jokes. For instance, on Planet One, dogs act like people. The bank is called "Savings and Bone," there is a "No Barking Zone," and a "Humans must be on leash" sign is posted. At times the illustrations appear a bit frenetic because of the labels and busy spreads, but older readers will enjoy their goofiness. Overall, this is a title to consider for libraries fielding requests for robot stories.-Lisa Gangemi Kropp, Middle Country Public Library, Centereach, NY Copyright 2005 Reed Business Information.
Kirkus Reviews
To Shulman's daffy tale of a boy and his robot pal off on a quest for proper role models for their newly-assembled dog, Fickling contributes both digitally created, Jimmy Neutron-style illustrations, and a cleverly designed punch-out paper spacecraft tucked into a rear pocket. Inspired by old Lassie broadcasts, Fillmore uses machines in his uncle's Invention Room to create "Sbot"-who comes off the conveyor belt, politely shakes hands, then wanders off in search of some tasty motor oil. "He's NOT a robot!" growls Geary, stung. "He's just a very bad dog." So how should a good dog act? Fillmore and Geary borrow Uncle's spaceship and, with capable Sbot at the controls, zoom off for encounters with dino-sized pups on one planet, spike-collared wolf-dogs on another, and similar misadventures. Arriving on Earth (New York City), they find proper exemplars at last-then realize just in time that a spaceship pilot makes a better pet than a tail-chasing drooler any day. Even confirmed dog-lovers, human or otherwise, will undoubtedly agree. (Picture book. 7-9)
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781587172564
  • Publisher: Chronicle Books LLC
  • Publication date: 10/28/2004
  • Pages: 40
  • Age range: 1 - 12 Years
  • Product dimensions: 8.12 (w) x 10.37 (h) x 0.50 (d)

Meet the Author

Mark Shulman studied film history at the University of Buffalo. Before writing picture books full time he was a camp counselor, radio newscaster, New York City tour guide and an advertising creative director. He lives in New York.

Phillip Fickling is an international artist and paper engineer. A native of Seattle, Phillip studied at the Burnley School of Professional Art. He lives in New Zealand.

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Sort by: Showing 1 Customer Reviews
  • Anonymous

    Posted October 21, 2005

    My four year old loves it. My eight year old loves it.

    Sometimes you come across a children's book that has it all. Fillmore and Geary is a story of friendship and acceptance. It is also a funny outerspace adventure. The artwork is crisp and clever, with surprises everywhere. The writing is smart and doesn't talk down to the children. And there is a toy rocket in the back that is easy to build and that comes with characters to put in it. Very clever! This story is on my must-read list every night with my older boys. It is a tale of a boy and his best friend who is a robot. They build a dog (from spare parts) because they don't know what a dog is. They get an old Lassie broadcast on their planet years later! The dog acts like an adult human, not a dog. So they go to other planets to find 'real dogs' who can teach a robot new tricks. Finally, they realize they like Sbot the way he is, and they accept his inner nature. Everyone has grown and changed in a positive way by the story's end. I can not stress enough how important this message is for impatient children nowadays. I very strongly recommend this book.

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