Miscellaneous: The book "Round Ireland with a fridge" written by Tony Hawks is an useful companion for an Ireland trip. It tells the true story of a bet that Tony cannot hitch hike around the circumference of Ireland with a fridge within one calender month. On his trip Tony visits many irish places and their unique people. The book is easy to read and gets you laughing out loud.
I like to carry my journal with me wherever I go so I can document my experiences. I also like to take along a good guide book, like the DK Travel Guides. Prior to any trip I like to do some preliminary research on the locations I would like to see, opening times, fees, transportation to get me there, closeness to hotel.
I like to also have a rough itinerary especially on a short trip.
The book "McCarthy's Bar" written by Pete McCarthy is a fine travel book for an Ireland trip. Pete McCarthy was born Irish but has spent most of his life in England. He therefore decides to do a tour from Cork to Donegal. On that trip he discovers that despite many changes since his childhood, the charm of the Irish people has still remained.
The book is not a tourist guide but it gives you a fair view of Ireland and its people.
Miscellaneous: The Rough Guide to Dublin is pretty cheap and has a lot of detail about attractions, pubs, restaurants etc. The maps in the back are excellent and east to use. I found out so many things that I would never have noticed just walking around. Definately worth the money.