Book Reviews - Mysterious world: Ireland
Media Reviews
Gerry Glennon, Midwest Irish Radio.

A Taste of Irish with Gerry Glennon
Midwest Irish Radio.

It’s an amazing publication, it’s beautifully crafted, presented and conceived and whether you’ll be from Ireland or not, whether you live in outer Zaire, this is definitely a book that you should have in your collection. I’ve been enthralled by it since I picked up a copy just 24 hours ago.

Powerful publication. Recommended highly!

Listen to the whole interview here:
Midwest Irish Radio (10MB)

The Z Travel & Leisure Hour

The Z Travel & Leisure Hour
Susan & Art Zuckerman

This is one of the best books we’ve read about Ireland, and if you ever want to go there then this is a must for you guys to have.

If you are ever travelling to Ireland and you don’t get this book, then you are making a big mistake. This will give you an inside look into a country and a people like I’ve never seen before in my life.

It is visually a beautiful book. First of all, it’s illustrated wonderfully. The photography is beautiful.

I don’t think I’ve ever seen a book that will prepare you for a trip to Ireland as much as this book.

Listen to the whole interview here:
Z Travel & Leisure Hour, Susan & Art Zuckerman (10MB)

Ireland of the Welcomes Magazine
A lovely fat paperback of nearly 800 pages in full colour, most fetchingly designed. Section 1 - The Mystery deals with Ireland’s prehistoric story, replete with Partholonians and Milesians and the like. On page 219 Section 2 - The History begins with the arrival of St Patrick. Section 3 - The Journey begins on page 353 and the following pages are charmingly arranged with the descriptive text sheltered by a colourful vaguely Romanesque arch, the supporting pillars on each side giving information on accommodation, transport, festivals and worthwhile sights. Unusual and charming.
Travel, Travel, Travel
A twist on the traditional travel guide. The tone is simple and playful – it’s like taking a jaunt through Ireland - yet the 774-page guidebook is an informative, but fun lesson in getting to know Ireland.

Part mystery, part history, part journey, Mysterious World Ireland is an engaging and entertaining book that is essential for anyone who knows that travel is not just about facts and figures.

Bridget Azeez

Click here to read the full review at Travel, Travel, Travel

Hampshire Chronicle
Andover Advertiser

Dick Bellringer reviews Mysterious World: Ireland by Ian Middleton

Andover Advertiser, Jan 5th 2007

ANDOVER- based travel writer Ian Middleton has collaborated with historian and publisher Douglas Elwell to produce a spectacular 700- page history and travelogue of Ireland. The book is beautifully produced with illustrations by Jim Fitzpatrick and is a meaty tome packed with information about today’s Ireland together with its history as it emerged from the mists of time. Published in the USA, it is the first in a series of Mysterious World Travel Guides. The idea emerged from the online Mysterious World Journal – www. – and in his foreword Doug says: “Over the years the quality of our articles has led many of our loyal readers to express an interest in subscribing to a print version of our magazine.” But rather than produce a print magazine he decided to produce a travel guide with a difference. The difference is that as well as providing a wealth of information about where to go and stay and what to see, it also ‘offers an in-depth look into the history and ancient mysteries’ of Ireland. Following in the footsteps of ancient Irish scholars the book also deploys the literary device of Tuan the Eagle with an adaptation of an image from the Book of Kells appearing on every page. The history is then fleshed out into a modern travelogue by Ian who explores many of the ancient sites of Ireland. He draws ‘attention to the plight of that part of Ireland that is slowly disappearing’, as Ian puts it himself in the book. Priced at $34.95 plus shipping, this is a book which will draw you into the delights of Ireland past and present. It is available from the website which can be found at

Click here to download a PDF of the original article with all images (1MB)

Untamed Travel Magazine

Reviewed by Jim Algie of Untamed Travel Magazine

"If only this debut release from the Mysterious World website was the voluminous shape of things to come in travel writing"

Tregolwyn Book Reviews

Review by Deborah Fisher

This is a beautiful book. In terms of sheer physical attractiveness, I don’t think I’ve ever been given anything more appealing to review. Although books, in the long run, have to be judged on content, they are certainly often bought on the strength of their appearance, and this gives Mysterious World: Ireland a head start, especially when compared with most of the stuff turned out by small publishers in the UK.

First impressions aren't everything, but the interior of the book is as well-produced as the cover -- more so, in fact. Each page is "illuminated" -- I can't think of a better word -- in keeping with the best traditions of Irish literary history.

The rest of the book is more your usual kind of travel guide, though it has its own distinctive style. Part 2 deals with Ireland’s history and culture, and takes us half way through the volume. Only in Part 3 do we get the data on places to see, eat and stay. This is the section contributed by irrepressible and energetic backpacker Ian Middleton, whose Hot-Footing it around the Emerald Isle I reviewed a couple of years back. Ian’s style has come on a bit, quality-wise, but he is still the same jokey, down-to-earth traveller we met in that other book.

We see the everyday detail of the visitor’s Ireland through Ian’s eyes. And it’s not such a bad way to travel, ensuring that the reader is simultaneously entertained and informed.

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Book Bit for WTBF-AM/FM, Troy, AL for March 17, 2007

"Mysterious World: Ireland" by Ian Middleton and Douglas Elwell, with photographs by Ian Middleton and illustrations by Jim Fitzpatrick (Mysterious World Press)

As an American proud of his Irish ancestry, I've read dozens of books about Ireland's geography, history and traditions. But this is a very unique and beautiful volume which is loaded with fascinating information!

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 Reader's Reviews
Judy K. Polhemus

When I opened the package from the mail and pulled out "Mysterious World: Ireland," my jaw literally dropped open! Wait, I could not have ordered a book such as this in paperback form. Then I remembered I had because it is a travel guide. What is the publisher thinking in making a lush coffee table book into a travel guide? You would have to see it to believe its incredible content and beauty. But I blather on.

On trips before, I have known friends to leave their guides at the last stop before heading home. Nope, not so for this book. This guide is a souvenir, a memory book of places visited. "Mysterious Places: Ireland" then becomes a new kind a coffee table book. At home leave it out, dog-eared, worn and torn, and guess how many visitors will pick it up? I dare say virtually every one!

"Mysterious World: Ireland" is unlike other travel guides: it is a mini encyclopedia of a country with a focus on its mysterious past. Publisher Elwell says this is the first of a series he and writer Middleton and staff will put together. There is no dearth of people interested in the mysteries of a place, its world and culture.

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Teresa Toole


Your book arrived and this recently minted dual Irish citizen (I even have an Irish passport) was delighted! The immediate thing I can say is that I wish that I had this book before my 3 month trip to Ireland. Like many people, I bought a group of books but yours would have been much more useful and satisfying. It is so comprehensive and entertaining. One can go as light or deep into a curiosity about Ireland, as one wants, organized by this wonderful book. The book came quickly and was in good shape. I am reading it now.

Congratulations again on your book. It has top travel “wow” factor!

Warmest Regards,

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