Alternately, they may retaliate

  • Parla

    Member Emeritus
    English - US
    "Alternately" makes no sense whatever in that context; if it's dropped, the rest does make sense, and the second sentence logically follows the first.
     

    Myridon

    Senior Member
    English - US
    "Alternately" makes no sense whatever in that context; if it's dropped, the rest does make sense, and the second sentence logically follows the first.
    The first sentence says they may hide their reaction (they don't catch adult attention). The second sentence says they may react publicly (you won't be punished if the adults don't know you've done anything).
    That seems like a contrast to me.
     

    Andygc

    Senior Member
    British English
    It's the use of "alternately" that makes no sense. "Alternatively" might make more sense. I don't think the writer meant that a boy would alternate between not attracting attention and attracting attention. That would be a very strange thing to suggest.
     
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