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Clockwork Prince (The Infernal Devices, #2)
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Books > Opinions on my team Jem essay?

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Bethany (beth_ess_xx) | 8 comments I wrote this essay for my english exam and was wondering what other infernaldevices fans thought. No hate this is my opinion.

Why I'm Team Jem

 James Carstairs - known as Jem - is a seventeen year old Shadowhunter featured in "The Infernal Devices" trilogy by Cassandra Clare. His mother was Chinese and his father was English. Jem came to London from Shanghai in 1873 when he was twelve years old after his parents were murdered. He is best friends and 'Parabati' with Will Herondale. Will is the main male character in the story and because of this you know that he is going to be the one the main girl, Tessa Gray, will end up with. However, while reading the books it was Jem I always rooted for. In this essay I am going to discuss some of the reasons why Jem so great and why out of Will and Jem, he is the one I like more.

When he was living in Asia, Jem's mother was targeted by a Greater Demon named Yanluo after she killed its offspring. Yanluo broke into the Shanghai Institute where the Carstairs family were living and took them prisoner. He tortured Jem by injecting him with Demon Poison and killed his parents before the Enclave came to save him. However, because Jem had been injected with the poison for so long, his body had become dependant on it and because of this, he is dying. He frequently takes small amounts of opium to satisfy his addiction and slow down the process of death. Although Jem knows he does not have long to live, he accepts this and does not feel sorry for himself. He makes the most of the little time he does have and goes after what he wants. An example of this is his proposal to Tessa in chapter eighteen of "Clockwork Prince": "I can offer you my life, but it is a short life; I can offer you my heart, though I have no idea how many more beats it can sustain. But I love you enough to hope that you will not care that I am being selfish in trying to make the rest of my life happy by spending it with you." As well as not feeling sorry for himself, Jem does not want others to feel sorry for him either. A scene that highlights this is the one in the prologue of "Clockwork Princess" where Will and Jem meet for the first time: "No, don't be ordinary like that. Don't say you're sorry. Say you'll train with me." I admire Jem's attitude towards his illness. He always shows optimism and bravery even when his condition is at it's worst.


All the way through the series Jem is consistently kind to Tessa and treats her with so much respect. From the very beginning he has shows how much he likes her and appreciates her. He enjoys her company and always knows what to say to make her feel better. An example of this can be found in chapter twenty of "Clockwork Angel": "I know you feel inhuman, and as if you are set apart, away from life and love, but ... I promise you the right man won't care." He tolerates the things she likes, such as books and poetry. Even if it is not his cup of tea, he is willing to give something a go for the sake of her happiness.  Jem is always honest, open and straightforward with Tessa, whereas how Will acts towards her changes constantly.  Will is sometimes nice to Tessa and horrible to her at other times. He spends the majority of the story denying the fact he is in love with her which causes Tessa a lot of pain. Jem makes his feelings for her crystal clear throughout.

Something I love about Jem is how he is unaware of his own beauty. Will, who has dark hair and blue eyes, is attractive in the obvious way, whereas Jem, whose hair and eyes have turned silver due to his illness, is attractive in how different and unusual he looks. Will has a large ego and knows he is good looking and that women want him, which personally puts me off him. Jem is shy and sensitive with no ego at all. He believes that his illness makes him unattractive. His insecurity in his physical appearance becomes clear in chapter nine of "Clockwork Prince": where he and Tessa are getting intimate: "I know, I am not - I mean -". Jem also has a beautiful personality and is treats everyone he meets with kindness and consideration, even if they are his enemy. He thinks about what comes out his mouth whereas Will a lot of the time speaks without thinking and is either unbothered or unaware if he causes offense, which he often does.


Jem is passionate about music and language. He plays the violin and is extremely talented at it. As well as playing with his eyes open, he can also play with his eyes closed, which I think shows how much he cares about his instrument and is dedicated to learning it and improving his skills. As well as being musical, Jem is also bilingual and can speak both English and Mandarin. He mostly speaks in English but often says things to Tessa in Mandarin. She is not familiar with the language and often has to ask him what he is saying. He is usually telling her how much he loves her or how beautiful she is. Will can also speak more than one language. He can speak both Welsh and English, but let's face it, Welsh is not as exotic as Mandarin.


So there we have it. Those are just some of the things that, in my opinion, make James Carstairs not only one of the best characters in "The Infernal Devices", but also the most lovable boy in any work of fiction I have read to date. Jem is  brave, kind, loving, modest, intelligent, musical and so much more. It's like Sophie says to Tessa in chapter fifteen of "Clockwork Prince": "Will has always been the brighter burning star, the one to catch attention - but Jem is a steady flame, unwavering and honest."

Aleksiel | 136 comments I think you need to clarify what things like 'shadowhunter', 'parabatai' and 'institute' mean, because your teacher won't know them. Or get rid of them what so ever. Also, it would be better if you don't compare Jem and Will, because you are just adding another unknown character. If you want to translate your message better, compare Jem to a more famous character from another fiction.

You need to explain why you value what Jem said and did.Do not just state facts or paraphrase what was written in the books, but use all this to support your opinion on Jem. Put more of your emotions in the essay.

This is my opinion, you asked for it! I hope I was helpful to you :)

Bethany (beth_ess_xx) | 8 comments Thankyou
I have notes to go with explaining terms such as shadowhunter on another sheet
I will try to add more opinions in and back up my quotes with them

message 4: by Enelra (new)

Enelra | 104 comments i agree with aleksiel

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