Random acts of terror, violence in public places, the lawless aftermath of natural disasters—events like these are motivating more and more individuals to undertake the responsibility of owning and carrying a weapon for self-defense. A record number of firearms have been purchased and concealed-carry applications submitted in states that permit them. Increasingly, people would rather depend on themselves and a CCW rather than be forced to hide, keep silent and hope that they aren’t victimized in a violent crime.

Companies like Springfield Armory, Taurus and several other manufacturers have invested a great deal of time and material into producing concealed-carry firearms that will satisfy the wants and needs of a wide range of legal gun-owners. New, innovative weapons like Taurus’ DT .357 Magnum revolver, the Glock 30S .45 ACP and Springfield’s single-stack, .45 ACP XD-S show that small size and easy concealablity do not always mean a lack of big-bore punch!

However, concealed carry is not just about having a small pistol in a hidden holster. It means having the correct mindset, training and a dynamic understanding of the use of deadly force, which requires the instant and correct recognition of what is a real life-threatening act. Choosing to shoot or not shoot, differentiating a deadly threat from a non-threat, knowing whether you are capable of shooting an attacker or incapable of shooting another human being all needs to be reviewed and worked out before you carry. Why? Because the very act of legitimate self-defense can have a tremendous impact on both you and others.

A recent Gallup poll noted that 47 percent of American adults keep at least one gun at home or on their property. Many others draw a sense of security from the protection offered by police. But the police will not always be there. It can take minutes or even longer for them to respond—and that’s if they get the call in the first place. When a natural disaster like Hurricane Sandy hit the Northeast, many law enforcement officers were relegated to distributing much-needed supplies to thousands of desperate people. In several instances where robbers invaded homes looking for loot, the police were unable to respond in time. Clearly, homeowners can be on their own at times. It’s up to you to protect yourself and your loved ones.

We feel that responsible carry of concealed firearms makes our society more, not less, safe. It’s our goal with Pocket Pistols 2013 to provide you with the information you need to choose the best weapons, holsters and equipment for concealed carry. This publication also offers a state-by-state review of the ever-changing concealed-carry laws as well as insights and tips from world-class professionals, like how to draw from concealment quickly and effectively. We’ll even teach you how to use cover to maximize your chances in a gunfight. If a smart, decisive and informed response to life-threatening events is the course you have chosen for self-defense, then we’re here to help.

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