etc // light bulbs killed polar bears

Argh.

I'm trying to remember a fantasy book I read a while back where it's part of the local culture or religion that anybody can come and take three token-type things from a big barrel. They have runes or symbols on them that correspond to certain virtues, I think. I've been through my recent books list and nothing is winking at me, so it's a book I either didn't list or I'm having a stupid moment.

Is this ringing a bell for anyone?
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Okay, I haven't read this one yet so it's a bit of a shot in the dark, but could it be Elantris by Brandon Sanderson? I know the number 3 features prominently in it, as do these rune/symbol thingies called Aons.
Pretty good for a shot in the dark, but no ;) I know Elantris really well, and that's not it.

This is going to drive me insane.