As a new shooter and keeping in line with the KISS theory I would only recommend a wheel gun.

Semi auto if you pull the trigger and it goes click, you have a bunch of malfunction drills to preform, tap rack, if it jams there are yet more, dropped mag, pressed out of battery......
Revolver if it goes click pull the trigger again....

Semi auto Laser grips are only available for some models
Revolver, you can get laser grips for almost any one....

Small Semi auto, 9mm .380 7-10 rounds, small but some brands are prone to jams, SS, blue and some may have polly frames...
Revolver, .357 5-8 rounds (except some .22's which can go more) SS, Blue, Titanium, Scandium, just remember the lighter the gun the more felt recoil....

.357 is a decent SD round, you can shoot .38 specials they are cheaper and easer on the hand at the range, you can buy shot shells for close up nuisance rounds,

9mm OK as a SD round
.380 some what less
.357 significantly hotter...
.38 not as.....
Why do I compare the 9, .380, .357, and .38 they are all the same dia bullet, and keeping with your cal choice.... but in a SD situation it all boils down to shot placement, which boils down to practice.....