while you are doing your research, go look for a good LFS
, try to find 3-4 so you can compare the prices and have more choices on what kind of fish you want.
for beginners, tetras, danios are great =] heck even fighting fish ( my favorite fish ) are great for beginners, ive a fighting fish survive in a bowl for over a year and recently lost it, im also starting my first tank and going to be adding another fighting fish w/ either corys or plecos ^_^
also check this out Fishless Cycling For Dummies
this will benefit your tank greatly