I’m an old-school kind of guy. Put me in front of a table full of new semiauto pistols of all types, styles and calibers, and the one I’ll likely reach for first is a Government Model 1911 .45. But that doesn’t mean that when I leave the house to make a quick run to the local convenience store for a late-night loaf of bread, a full-size 1911 is the likely gun I’ll tuck in my pocket. No, in that case I’m a lot like everybody else. I’ll reach for something lightweight, compact and unobtrusive, but nonetheless chambered for a cartridge with a little authority. These days, that’s most likely to be a small polymer-frame DAO 9mm.
I like small guns. I find that that whole James Bond deep concealment thing strangely appealing. “I may be wearing a form-fitting black tux, but I still have this tiny pistol with which to kill you.” The idea of a highly deadly mouse gun may not be pure fantasy, but it’s close. The chances of fending off a bevy of bad guys with a pocket pistol are about the same as the odds of crossing the Atlantic in a Sunfish. It’s doable, but you’d have to be extremely talented and incredibly lucky. No wonder James Bond traded his .25-caliber Beretta 418 for a .32-caliber Walther PPK. Which should make the new Ruger LC9 better still. It’s a small handgun with seven servings of 9mm stopping power. What’s not to like?
In our epic Single Stack 9mm Shootout last year, one of the guns we reviewed was the Ruger LC9. It’s a decent pistol, but the general perception among the Lucky Gunner team was that it was the most difficult to shoot of the six guns we tested. A long, heavy double action trigger is hard enough to master as it is, and the light weight of the LC9 makes it even more challenging.