In 2001, Winfrey selected Franzen's first novel, The Corrections, for her book club. After the author made ambiguous comments about the club and said some of its picks were "schmaltzy," she canceled his scheduled appearance on her show.
Freedom, which tells the story of a troubled Minnesota family, had already received a substantial endorsement when President Obama bought the book while vacationing on Martha's Vineyard this summer. Franzen, 51, also was the subject of a recent Time magazine cover story, and the book has gotten some high-profile raves.
Winfrey is expected to announce her pick on Friday's show. The AP learned of Freedom's selection from three different bookstores, and then its reporter purchased a copy of the novel with her book club's sticker on it.