One thing I will say - the only thing that felt naggingly familiar throughout the book (amidst all the strange new uniqueness of everything) was the relationship between the volcanoes - the aloof Sorrow standing apart from the two warriors who had fought over her. Only at the end did the obvious hit me (because I read the author explaining it): the inspiration was, of course, the story of Taranaki, Tongariro and Pirongia. As half my family is from Taranaki and the tale is such a familiar one, I can't believe I missed it!
With this new-found knowledge, here are some very kiwi pictures that I can't get out of my head in relation to Gullstruck Island:
Three Sisters, Tongaporutu, Taranaki
Pink and White Terraces, Rotorua
Rocks on Tongaporutu Beach, Taranaki