This has been a big debate in the Christian history for a long time. Some who misunderstand the Scripture regarding the topic think that Paul's and James's teachings on it are contradictory. One of the extereme positions says that the book of James is not as important or grave scripture as Paul's epistles, such as the book of Romans.
However, all the Scripture is inspired of the Holy Spirit and inerrant that there is no contradiction even though human beings could not get it. Nevertheless, this topic is not the case at all that there is a contradiction between James's and Paul's teachings. It is just a misunderstanding and misconception of some people. They think faith and works are separate but they are one thing viewed and termed from different angles. The misconception is exactly what James is talking against and also Paul affirms too in various places of his writings, such as Romans 4:18-22.