Character List and Analysis
Of District 12's two Hunger Games victors in 72 years, Haymitch is the only one still living. He is a middle-aged man who is always very drunk, but, after seeing some spunk in Katniss and Peeta, he decides that he will sober up enough to mentor them and help them survive the Games. He calls Katniss "sweetheart" in a sometimes abrasive way that angers her. At first, Katniss believes that Haymitch hates her and even withholds gifts from her in the arena so that she'll die. Soon, though, she realizes that Haymitch is communicating with her through his gifts (or lack of them) and that she and Haymitch are more alike than she'd like to let on. He never married and doesn't have any children, and Katniss wonders how hard it must be for Haymitch to watch District 12's tributes die year after year. She grows fond of Haymitch throughout the novel, and he grows fond of her as well, doing his best to train her, coach her, and watch over her when she returns.