As far as pistols, if she's like my wife, she needs a revolver. With the safety, mag release, slide release, etc., she couldn't figure it out in self defense situation. If she can change mags and clear a stovepipe in a hurry, a 9 would be fine.
Federal 9mm 115gr fmj is $9.97/50 rds at walmart. Has been for a while. That's what I shoot at the range. Every time I go there I look to get a couple boxes of WWB 147 JHP but nobody has them. Range ammo is easy to get but SD is MUCH harder to find.
(I suspect this is going to get jumped on quickly but here goes...)
Mitch’s in Hamilton is handling some reloaded ammunition at what I consider to be good prices, particularly for blowing holes in paper. I’ve met the guy(s) who is(are) doing the reloading. He’s a local fellow.
9mm FMJ 50rd box @$9*
38 Spec lead SWC 50rd box @$12*[/list]
45 ACP FMJ 50rd box @12.95* (I think)
Have shot a couple boxes of the 9mm and they function quite well.
While I’m sure there are a bunch of folks out there who might advise against purchasing reloads in certain situations, I feel comfortable dealing through Mitch’s.