A he-said-she-said chick lit/teen romance novel taking place in circa 1994-2000 about a boy named Bryce and a girl named Julianna. When they meet in second grade, Juli becomes infatuated with Bryce and clings to him like a parasite. But Bryce doesn't feel like returning the favor, him being girl-phobic and easily embarrassed. Bryce does everything he can to keep his wannabe girlfriend at bay for the next few years, which isn't easy since they go to the same school and live across the street from one another. The story follows them from grade school to junior high, through triumph and disaster, family drama and first love, as they make the discoveries that will define who they are - and who they are to each other.It was released in 2000 to acclaim and several awards, and it got a movie adaptation in 2010 which received mixed reception and bombed at the box office.
Abusive Dad: Mr. Loski borders on this in the movie, going so far as to hit Bryce's sister. In fairness to him, it happens one time, and as such he's not a full-on example of the trope.
Also somewhat mollifying the situation, he was under stress from trying to shift his views on Juli's family, it was pointed out to him earlier that night that he'd lost a vital part of himself when he quit his band, he'd been drinking fairly steadily, and it was after she called him an asshole, which was much more of an issue at the time when the film was set.
Alpha Bitch: Sherry to hear Juli tell it. Not according to Bryce, or anything we see her do onscreen.
Bachelor Auction: Bryce is put through this and is sold to the most popular girl in school, Shelly. He is not happy about this however because he wanted to be bid on by Juli who bid on the boy before him.
He also lampshades the Double Standard of the trope, noting that if they were auctioning off the girls, no one would think it was cute.
Betty and Veronica: Juli and Shelly/Sherry (and later Miranda) for Bryce. Subverted in that Bryce has no interest in Shelly; he only uses her to annoy Juli.
Bitch in Sheep's Clothing: Mr. Loski in the book, who hides a lot of petty hatred under a smooth exterior; he's a bit more obvious about it in the movie, where he borders on Abusive Dad. Juli thinks Shelly is an example, but while she's a little shallow and catty, she's hardly evil.
Character Development: Bryce in particular gets quite a bit, moving from a deliberately shallow Stepford Smiler to a genuinely nice, if very confused, kid. Juli, conversely, starts learning to see past people's surfaces and look at what's underneath. This proves problematic when it comes to Bryce.
Genki Girl: Arguably, Juli during a couple of scenes in their second grade. By the time the main story starts she's grown up.
Girl Next Door: Juli is such a friendly neighbor that she regularly gives Bryce her chicken's eggs for his family.
Growing Up Sucks / Freudian Excuse: During the awkward family dinner, it's implied that Bryce's father is so mean-spirited in part because he feels trapped in his role as a suburban bread-winner and that he regrets having given up his early dreams as a saxophone player in a band.
Bryce's father, Rick/Steven (his name was changed for the film) is a petty jerk completely caught up with surface appearances.
Bryce's friend Garrett, who has no problems betraying Bryce, or ditching him when he becomes a social pariah. Not surprisingly, Garrett and Bryce's father ended up shaping Bryce's views on Juli, which is why he's initially so cold towards her.
Jerk with a Heart of Gold: Bryce. On the surface he's detached, paranoid, and at times, outright manipulative of others. But he's a product of his environment, and at the core of it, really isn't that bad.
KidAnova: Played with. Bryce has lots of girl's pining after him and he's very aware of it. He's also more or less completely uninterested, and only uses Shelly/Sherry to keep Juli at bay.
Also justified, at least within the film, where we see that Bryce is in very good shape for a teenager, and is a known sports player in school, along with being cleancut and good-looking.
Literally Loving Thy Neighbor: Bryce moves in right across the street from Julie. She sees him and decides that he's walking around with her first kiss.
"Rashomon"-Style: Shows the events in the movie and book from the perspectives of both Bryce and Juli, which are quite different, especially at the start.
Satellite Love Interest: Subverted. Bryce comes off this way from the perspective of Juli's parents and friends. In reality he's got lots of depth; he just also happens to be a raging Stepford Smiler and is deliberately repressing it. Just as she's finally giving up on him, he starts to show it...
Actually also played straight. After getting over her pining for Bryce, Juli actually comes to learn that she really knows little to nothing about Bryce as the two never had a real conversation. It wasn't until Bryce attempted to make amends for his previous callousness that the two actually started to bond.
Stepford Smiler: Bryce. He's obsessed with blending at school, making sure that no one realizes how bad the situation at home is, and remaining completely under the radar, all while covering how badly repressed he is. An interesting variation as he looks like a Type B to the outside world, but is actually far more of a Type A. There's a lot going on there; he just doesn't like to show it.