I've struggled a bit this summer with keeping my mouth shut, as my eldest appeared to do almost nothing (except her 3-week summer program titled Mathematics for Budding Particle Physicists, which she loved). Where did all that initiative go? I'm used to having her devour math books all summer. But there wasn't much of that in evidence this year.
The other day I gave myself a firm talking-to, and reviewed the evidence. As soon as school let out, Eldest picked up an enormous anthology of literature, and plowed through more than 1500 pages. Having discovered she liked Flannery O'Connor, she hauled out the Library of America collection of O'Connor's works, and read that. (She may have omitted a bit, after I told her I thought O'Connor was pretty intense, and best enjoyed over time.) Then she moved on to Willa Cather. Then she read Don Quixote in its entirety. That took a while. She also read a book of Chekov plays, and has mostly finished Tom Jones. Her summer reading assignment for school was The Joy Luck Club, which she enjoyed.
I don't know how many pages that amounts to in all, but it's enough that I think perhaps the issue isn't her lack of initiative, but my lack of perception.
At least I kept my mouth shut, so she won't know I was worried... until she reads this.