Jacob Sam-La Rose has been described as 'a one-man literary industry'. This was Patrick Neate's comment on the BBC Poetry Season website: 'Passionate about poetry and its power to change people's lives, he's a lesson to us all. He's also a damn fine writer.' Already well-known on the UK performance circuit, Sam-La Rose has also spent many years working with young people in schools and communities, especially around London. So it will come as a surprise to many that Breaking Silence is his first book-length collection of poetry. It is a collection that sits on the threshold between the personal and the profound, with eyes on race and dual heritage; masculinity and manhood; definitions and senses of self. Above all, it's a collection that's invested in the power of the voice, in the work of giving a voice to issues and entities that would otherwise remain silent. It speaks on divides, from the spaces in between. Jacob Sam-La Rose's work is grounded in a belief that poetry can be a powerful force within a community, and that it's possible to combine the immediacy of poetry in performance with formal rigour and innovation on the page.