I found this book at the library. It was copyrighted in 2004; the trade paperback was re-issued by Random House in 2012, the same year the movie was released.
Genre: Humor / Satire
Book Length: 320 Pages (trade paperback)
Amazon Link: The Best Exotic Marigold Hotel
Author Website: Deborah Moggach
Book Beginning (Each chapter starts with a quote):
The Truth will set you free. - Swami Purna
Muriel Donnelly, an old girl in her seventies, was left in a hospital cubicle for forty-eight hours. She had taken a tumble in Peckham High Street and was admitted with cuts, bruises, and suspected concussion. Two days she lay in A&E, untended, the blood stiffening on her clothes.
It made the headlines. TWO DAYS! screamed the tabloids. Two days on a trolley, old, neglected, alone. St. Jude's was besieged by reporters, waylaying nurses and shouting into their mobiles, didn't they know the things were forbidden? Photos showed her lolling gray head and black eye. Plucky pensioner, she had survived the Blitz for this? Her image was beamed around the country: Muriel Donnelly, the latest victim of a collapsing NHS, the latest shocking statistic showing that the British health system, once the best in the world, was disintegrating in a welter of underfunding, staff shortages and collapsing morale.
The Friday 56 (from Page 156 - trade paperback edition):
As it turned out, the minibus broke down on the journey home. It had taken a while to repair, apparently with a length of twine donated by a roadside coconut-seller, and they were late for dinner. Plus, Madge had lost her sunglasses.
When Ravi Kapoor, an overworked London doctor, reaches the breaking point with his difficult father-in-law, he asks his wife: “Can’t we just send him away somewhere? Somewhere far, far away.” His prayer is seemingly answered when Ravi’s entrepreneurial cousin sets up a retirement home in India, hoping to re-create in Bangalore an elegant lost corner of England. Several retirees are enticed by the promise of indulgent living at a bargain price, but upon arriving, they are dismayed to find that restoration of the once sophisticated hotel has stalled, and that such amenities as water and electricity are . . . infrequent. But what their new life lacks in luxury, they come to find, it’s plentiful in adventure, stunning beauty, and unexpected love.