If you really wanted a semi auto and money isn't to tight, how about an FN five-seven? They are light, recoil is negligable, and hold 20 rounds of much more capable ammo then any .22 magnum loading. Also since the OP wanted a LASER sight option the accessory rail will easily accomodate a ton of aftermarket LASERs and flashlights.
This is assuming lady in question is willing and able to put the time in to learn to use a semi auto. Some females just are not interested enough in guns to learn how to run a semiauto even if they want to carry a handgun. My mom is that way. She is accurate enough with any handgun she can control (has nerve damage making her very recoil sensitive), but does not have the mindset, desire, or time to learn how to load and unload , clear malfunctions, load magazines, dissaemble and reassemble, etc a semi auto. With her revolver all she has to do is know where the cylinder release and the trigger are. When picking out a weapon for someone else their willingness and ability to learn the ins and outs of that particular weapon is an important consideration. More so then caliber in my opinion.
TFL survivor, THR member, TFL member once again!