THESE little ones--(from top to bottom) The Ruger LCP, Walther PPK, and Smith and Wesson Model 642.The first two are .380 ACP and they hold seven shots each, the S&W is .38 Special and it holds five.
Given my druthers, the .38 is still my favorite carry pistol because it's the most powerful of the three, and I consider five .38's worth seven .380's any day, especially in a quality pistol like this little Smith. But all three of these pistols have their applications. The LCP has the worst sights and trigger but it practically disappears into my pocket. And that horrible trigger acts as a reliable safety to keep negligent discharges in said pocket from occurring.
In between, the PPK...well it's got style going for it. James Bond and all... (Yes, I know that his was .32ACP and not .380, but I didn't need yet another anemic caliber in my ammo closet.) But this PPK probably has the best trigger and sights of the three of them. It's got a serious Double-Action/Single-Action trigger and small but prominent front and rear sights, whereas the other two only have front sights and a channel instead of a real rear sight.
The PPK came broken from a Gunbroker sale although it was represented as being fully functional and I just fixed it after finding the necessary part and schematic at Numerich Arms.
None of these are match pistols, nor do they have the stopping power and magazine capacity of a modern combat pistol, but they all have one thing in common that makes them handier than larger, better fighting pistols--they're small. They're easier to conceal than a full-size 1911 or K-frame revolver, and they can often just be slipped into a pocket, making them more convenient to carry into more places than a full-sized pistol. That means that sometimes they wind up with me where one of my regular carry sidearms might not be. And Rule #1 of a gunfight is: "Have a gun".
These three also have the one prerequisite for any gun that I'll ever own or carry: They're reliable. They shoot when I squeeze the trigger and the round goes where I aim it. They may be small, but in a crunch they'll still put rounds on target every time, and that's not something that you can take for granted when buying a gun. If your pistol won't fire your chosen self-defense rough a hundred times out of a hundred, it's not reliable enough to trust you life to no matter how small or light or "cute" it is.