The Rise of Silas Lapham : The Rise of Silas Lapham, by William Dean Howells, is part of the Barnes & Noble Classics series, which offers quality editions at affordable prices to the student and the general reader, including new scholarship, thoughtful design, and pages of carefully crafted extras. Here are some of the remarkable features of Barnes & Noble Classics: All editions are beautifully designed and are printed to superior specifications; some include illustrations of historical interest. Barnes & Noble Classics pulls together a constellation of influences - biographical, historical, and literary - to enrich each reader's understanding of these enduring works. After the Civil War, rapid industrialization created a new crop of American multimillionaires. Although as wealthy as the aristocrats of Boston and New York, the nouveaux riches were rejected by those arrogant guardians of traditional society because of their uneducated tastes and uncouth styles. This class conflict is at the core of The Rise of Silas Lapham, one of the first American novels of manners, one of the first to look at the American businessman and self-made millionaire, and one of the first to employ realism - a style that would come to dominate twentieth-century American fiction.