The Golden Compass is a children's fantasy novel written by English author Philip Pullman. It is originally written as a children's book, however it is also classified as a young adult novel, as well as a coming of age novel, as it is most appropriate for ages nine and above, depending on the country and the publishing house. Some countries and some publishing companies deem it not suitable for children under the age of nine, while other countries and other publishers (mainly those in the United States), deem it inappropriate for children younger than thirteen, due to the book's adult themes, such as violence. In general, the book is usually aimed at children between the ages of ten and fourteen.
Northern Lights is actually is actually the first part of Pullman's popular trilogy His Dark Material, which consists of Northern Lights (1995), The Subtle Knife (1997), and The Amber Spyglass (2000). All three novels are categorized in three genres: children's literature, young adult fiction, and fantasy.
Thus, Pullman's The Golden Compass, or Northern Lights, both belongs in the children's literature genre and is mainly aimed at children; however, all ages can enjoy it.