Japanese and Blacks, Sharing the 'Shaw

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Author Nina Revoyr outside the now-defunct Holiday Bowl in L.A.'s Crenshaw District.

Author Nina Revoyr outside the now-defunct Holiday Bowl in L.A.'s Crenshaw District. Farai Chideya, NPR hide caption

itoggle caption Farai Chideya, NPR

Los Angeles is home to almost four million people of every ethnicity — and sometimes, they don't share that home very peacefully.

But it doesn't always have to be that way, says author Nina Revoyr. At the heart of her mystery novel Southland is a seemingly harmonious neighborhood of black and Japanese-Americans in the central Los Angeles neighborhood of Crenshaw.

In the novel, the protagonist discovers the less-than-harmonious history of the neighborhood and her personal connection to the 1965 Watts riots.

Revoyr and Farai Chideya took a stroll through the Crenshaw neighborhood — called "the 'Shaw" by many residents — to tour the places where two cultures have come together to create a unique, only-in-L.A. experience.

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