Mongoose is an Object Data Modeling (ODM) library for MongoDB and Node.js. It provides a straightforward and schema-based solution for interacting with MongoDB databases, allowing you to define models with properties, types, and validation rules. Mongoose simplifies the process of connecting to MongoDB, performing CRUD operations, and handling relationships between data.
Compared to using the MongoDB driver directly, Mongoose offers a higher level of abstraction and additional features like middleware, virtuals, and query helpers. It also provides built-in support for data validation, indexing, and schema migrations. Mongoose is widely used in the Node.js ecosystem and has a large and active community.