A detailed first-person account of the raid that killed Osama bin Laden, written under a pseudonym by a Navy Seal who participated in the mission and was present at bin Laden's death, will be published next month, according to two publishing executives familiar with the deal.
The book, "No Easy Day: The Firsthand Account of the Mission That Killed Osama bin Laden," which is scheduled to be released on Sept. 11, has been a tightly held secret at the publisher, Penguin. It promises to be one of the biggest books of the year, with the potential to affect the presidential campaign in the final weeks before the election.
The author's name will be listed as Mark Owen by Dutton, an imprint of Penguin. For security reasons, he used a pseudonym and changed the names of other Seal members.
A former member of Seal Team 6, the author was a team leader in the operation that resulted in the death of Bin Laden in Abbottabad, Pakistan, on May 2, 2011.
A co-writer, Kevin Maurer, is the author of four books and was embedded with Special Forces in Afghanistan six times.
According to a description of the book, provided by a publishing executive, the author gives a "blow-by blow narrative of the assault, beginning with the helicopter crash that could have ended Owen's life straight through to the radio call confirming Bin Laden's death, is an essential piece of modern history."
The publishing executives familiar with the deal would not say to what extent the book was vetted by government agencies. The Obama administration has cited the killing of Bin Laden as one of the president's signature achievements of his first term.
The author also recalls his childhood in Alaska, his grueling preparation to become a Seal and other previously unreported Seal missions. He completed 13 combat deployments since the attacks of Sept. 11, 2001, and retired within the last year.
Bookstores were first given a few clues about the book last month. One independent bookstore owner said in July that she was told only that Dutton had added a "big, major book" written by an anonymous author to its fall list.
Members of Dutton's sales staff were given a detailed description of the book during a conference call with executives on Wednesday. Christine Ball, a spokeswoman for Dutton, declined to comment.
The publisher is expecting a major best seller, with a planned print run of 300,000 copies in hardcover, according to a person familiar with the plans.
Because the book is written under a pseudonym, the author will appear in disguise during television interviews to promote the book. At least one major network prime-time appearance has been planned, a person familiar with the plans said, and during interviews on television and radio, the author's voice will be altered.